Bantha Rider – Bantha Rider

7 Production
6 Composition
8 Mood
7 Instrumentation

I have never liked novelty bands, in the past. They always amounted to a waste of my time. So it slowly became a personal rule that I would avoid them whenever possible. But when I saw three Tusken Raiders smoking a bong on the cover of an album by a band called Bantha Rider, I knew I had found something special.

RELEASE DATE: 07 January 2017 LABEL: Self-released

This doomy-sludge trio hailing from Warsaw, Poland have made themselves comfortable in a valley betwixt old Black Sabbath’s fuzzy riffs, the slow doomy tones of Earth, and the angsty jams reminiscent of Red Fang. The basslines are fatter than Jabba, the guitar effects are hairier than Chewbacca, and altogether the music is expansive and violent as the sand dunes of Tatooine.

Nerd references aside, this small EP is big on sound. The trio fills the air to the brim with low and slow doom passages, head-banging inducing sludge riffs, classic stoner guitar solos, and the best part is that you never know which of the three is coming at you next. These guys don’t care what genres are where, they just play to their heart’s content, following where their fingers take them. They don’t spend too much time on any one chord progression either, which gives way to a myriad of riffs.

They’re all very talented at what they play, not one instrument outshines or is obstructed by the others. The structure of any given track can be a bit predictable at times, like you know that they’re going to bring it back after breaking it down. And sometimes the textures can feel a bit redundant, a larger variety of effects would take this band far.

Overall, it has its own pro and cons. They’ve definitely found a good sound and have explored it well, but if they expand their sound they can ensure a future as a band. But right now, it’s so damn fun and you don’t even need to be a Star Wars fan at all to enjoy this golden nugget of an EP.

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