Yonkers-based band Saturday Saints, mainstays of the NYC club circuit, have spent years perfecting their stadium-size sound with alternative rock sensibility. And today, the esteemed rock and rollers have released their debut album, Anhedonia, on Rhyme & Reason Records.
Having initially formed in the 90s, the sound from this band is definitely a remnant of that beloved alt-rock era and in the best ways. In a culture that feeds off nostalgia, the band excels greatly. Saturday Saints – formerly Latterday Saints – are veterans of legendary venues like CBGB, Mercury Lounge, and ACME Underground, and have honed their live performance chops for years.
Now, the band can celebrate the release of their long awaited first album, which is full of raw power, searing guitars, and heavy grooves. Anhedonia indeed delivers a hefty punch and then some.
The opening track, “Inside Out,” is an excellent appetizer for the record with its instant headbanging beat and layered emotional vocal. The record is teased in fantastic fashion due to the song’s stylistic nostalgia value arriving at a time when a 90’s/early 00’s era rock sound seems to be making a bit of a resurgence into the mainstream.
I believe that Saturday Saints chose “Coffin” as a single quite simply because it embodies what the band is all about. It’s a catchy rock anthem with no frills, but is proof that less is more. With its blazing riff, easy-to-sing-a-long hook, and tom-tom heavy beat, it’s bound to be a favorite for fans.
With “Tell Myself,” I’m instantly hit with a wave of childhood memory. The guitar sound to me is reminiscent of the controlled restraint behind some of the best riffs of 90s bands. While not any less powerful than the rest of the album, the chorus is very emotional in its rich vocal harmony.
The title track, “Anhedonia,” reveals the meaning behind the record’s name. Meaning “lack of pleasure,” it’s evident in the song that the protagonist is sick of his current predicament and wants it to end. “This is all you care about / You are my disease,” is a lyric that really drives the message home. Sometimes we have someone in our lives that ails us more than helps us.
Deciding to end the album with a punch, “The Quiet Ones” is an outro worth turning up full blast and jamming out to. With its verses that build into beautifully emotional hooks full of impressive vocal chops, the listener can’t help but feel the anticipation and relief within the song’s dynamics. Not to mention, another catchy guitar riff that stays in the listener’s head still after the track’s last distorted note rings out proud and true.
Anhedonia is a rock-solid debut album from a band that’s been around cutting their chops for years. It’s a nostalgic experience that will certainly be a delight for any alternative rock fan.