REVIEW: RX Bandits – ‘Gemini, Her Majesty’

rx bandits

Artist: RX Bandits
Album: Gemini, Her Majesty
Genre: Progressive Rock
Label: Mash Down Babylon Records

When it comes to bands similar to (and comprised of members from) The Sound Of Animals Fighting, I find myself amidst the conclusion that progressive-sounding genres are either automatically bewildering or strangely fascinating. The latter can fortunately be said about Gemini, Her Majesty, RX Bandits‘ seventh full-length album, out now via the band’s own MDB Records. Five long years after the release of their last record, Mandala, these California natives are finally back with new material that they’re currently supporting on tour alongside The Dear Hunter. From the record’s astronomical cover art to the choral, fade-out last few seconds, Gemini, Her Majesty is filled with upbeat reggae-infused melodies and an overall intrinsic technical vibe characteristic of the band’s impressive back catalog.

“Intro” and the first minute into “Ruby Cumulous,” the beginning of this eleven-track outfit, are undeniably the outliers, setting the audience up for an outlandish impression that will fall short mid-way through the record. The latter track quickly jolts into its catchy, beach vibe, capturing the essence of the entire record from there on out. It becomes quite difficult to explain how the band manages to blend punk riffs into the record, but that’s the band’s roots for you.

Although arguably the least melodically and lyrically convoluted of them all, “Wide Open” is probably my favorite track. The strong resemblance to at-peak Red Hot Chili Peppers wasn’t bad, either. “Fire to the Ocean” was another funky one; funky, as in “using a strong dance rhythm” funk. Next track, “G2G” is what a Menzingers song would sound like had they written happier, slightly more chipper material for Rented World. “Will You Be Tomorrow” breaks the upbeat dynamic on a degree that’s just right. The effects we heard during the intro track can pompously be found in this track.

Another standout was “1995” as this track also broke the upbeat dynamic and managed to incorporate all the themes of the record, including the grandiose guitar solos and celebrated Chris Tsagakis drum fills. “Future, Buddy” was an excellent closer choice as it sums up (and wraps up) the record perfectly by combining the catchy with the complex.

Hiatuses and side projects aside, half a decade was a really long wait for a new full-length. Luckily, a shiny new toy that is Gemini, Her Majesty easily obliterated those five years.

SCORE: 8/10
Review written by Dana Reandelar

Dana Reandelar

If not hunched over her desk writing about music, Dana can be found binge-watching old episodes of Gilmore Girls or condensing long rants to 140 characters. She also writes for Idobi Radio, and is an Off The Record podcast contributor.
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  • Grant

    Glad you liked the album but I’m pretty sure this is only either seventh album, not their eighth.

  • Brian Lion

    I honestly thought I had edited that when going through this. Thanks for catching it.

  • Grant

    No problem!