The Roadside Bandits Project – Wastelands (2021)

With their self-titled album, The Roadside Bandits Project mixed blues and electronica to get you thoroughly hooked to their sound. Their latest single ‘Wastelands’ is here to cement their place in your brain. Featuring vocals by Julian Casewell (The King’s Pistol), the single explores the hardships suffered by those in society who are neglected by the people in power.

Bringing a heavier hit of blues guitar, this track also features renowned guest musicians Matt Johnson (keyboard), Mark Neary (bass) and Daniel Delgado (drums). The synths and guitars are provided by Santi Arribas, the brain behind this project. If you need a little help getting into the lyrics and emotions of the single (which you really shouldn’t), the collective has just released an amazing lyric video.

‘Wastelands’ pulls you in with some amazing blues guitar that sinks into your soul as only good blues can. This turns into a rather expansive melody that reaches out toward the horizon as if drawing your attention to a desolate landscape. The vibe of the music works wonderfully with the despair and barren landscape of the overall vibes of the vocals. While expansive and desolate, the melody also has a delightful richness to it that you can’t help but love. The guitar riffs soar through you and tug at a thread in your chest while the keys light play over the beats of the drums. The musical prowess of each musician comes through amazingly throughout the single highlighting their abilities while merging into a rather epic sound.

Casewell’s vocals add a growl to the soundscape that creates a depth of emotion. Through his performance, you can feel the hardships of life and the constant struggle to overcome the wasteland of life. His voice has a rock vibe that enhances the emotive hits of the track. At times, there is a feeling of hopelessness that gives way to a feeling of resignation to the pain being felt. Throughout the single, there is also a call out of those in charge who could do something to help but sit in their ivory towers far away from the struggles.

While the single on its own is amazing enough to sink its hooks into your soul, the official lyric video adds a poignancy that elevates the whole track. The use of colour in the video enhances the emotion of the track. Red-tinged backgrounds bolster the desolation while blue houses and drums evoke a sense of despair and sadness. The animation edged band brings something to the guitar riffs that makes you appreciate them even more. This is one of the best lyric videos out there because it uses the visuals behind the lyrics to really push the message and emotions of the single home.

The Roadside Bandits Project cements their place on your favourite playlist with ‘Wastelands’. A single that hits on the real struggle of people and the detachment of the ruling class, it fills you with desolation and resignation of life. The vocals bring a growl of rock to the blues of the soundscape creating an epic listening experience. The official lyric video is masterfully crafted using colours and animation to bring the emotions of the track home.

Find out more about The Roadside Bandits Project on their website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Spotify.

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