Bantha Rider by Bantha Rider

Release date: January 7, 2018
Label: Self-Released

Pick up the bong, set the trilogy up in the background; Bantha Rider are offering the finest in Star Wars themed stoner music. It’s a self-evidently brilliant concept, but it also delivers. That sentence has actually made me think about ordering food. So, as you may or may not know by now, I am well within the mindset needed to fully appreciate this shit.

‘Sandcrawler’ wastes no time with pre-riff pleasantries it just tears straight through leaving all in its path crushed like crisps under bison. It’s highly satisfying to think that we’ve progressed so far as a society than we’re starting to have good Star Wars themed bands. It’s fairly straight forward stoner rock, but I can’t fault that. I fucking love a good stoner rock band and whilst this is pigeonholing the band a bit, that’s exactly how I’d describe Batha Rider.

The ‘Uta Tuta Solo (Greedo’s Funeral)’ is a particular highlight of the collection some real toe-tapping, head-bobbing, limb-flailing guitar goodness in this one. It reminds me of Red Fang for some reason. It’s likely the catchiness of the riff versus its heaviness.

‘Jawa Juice’ adds more relentless riffage, sludge and solos. It’s exactly what I was after from this collection and I suppose the issue with reviewing this album is that it’s just how I imagined it would be. It’s in many ways, typical stoner music, but whilst that sounds derogatory, it’s also exactly what I wanted. I find it hard to write anything about it that doesn’t sound obvious, but what this showcases is that these guys can work in this style extremely well and there’s obviously potential for further expansion elsewhere.

The final track, ‘Sarlacc’s Pit’ leans onto the heavier aspects of the band’s sound taking steps further towards what I’d call metal, it’s a fitting expansion for the album and a satisfying conclusion to the record overall.

If you like Star Wars and stoner music, you’ll get a kick out of this. There’s definitely some potential to push the boat out further going forward and it should be interesting to see what path Bantha Rider take now.

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