The Sword

I don’t usually do rock criticism (it’s never been better than Lester Bangs…), but this odd find, Warp Riders by The Sword is just too deep into interstellar riff(t) space to pass up. The dudes at io9 describe them as “psychedelic heavy metal sci-fi” and that’s a good start. Shades of Ozzy, Heavy Metal (the movie), and strangely, old school “silver age” fantasy and sci-fi. The album cover is highly reminiscent of artists like Chris Foss. These guys are to Robert E. Howard (or, even, Michael Moorcock) what Darkest of the Hillside Thickets are to H.P. Lovecraft. Maybe it’s because this epic star spanning rock opera involves a dark figure known as the “Chronomancer”, but this stuff is just pure awesome. The power guitar of Black Sabbath with a few nice twists, these guys will get your mind spinning and your ears ringing before you can even think of making the jump to light speed.

For variety, I include another sample, ominously entitled Lawless Lands.

In a galactic melange of dark forces The Sword pushes classic rock, from A to Zeppelin, out beyond our known universe. And for that, they should be commended.

Thanks to the wacky wizards at io9.

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3 Responses to “The Sword”

  1. S'Mat! Says:

    nice…I too was referred by io9. Chunky, heavy concept metal at its finest without too many weird deviations of say Mastodon. You do good review mr mancer.

  2. nursemyra Says:

    I like the cover art. The music not so much.

  3. The Necromancer Says:

    @S’Mat: Appreciate the nod. Our paths intersect again, even in the wispy netherspace of retro rock concept. I mentioned Moorcock because of the whole sword angle, and beyond the obvious Freudianisms, these guys just make me think of Elric and Stormbringer.

    @nursemyra: See above. The cover art crosses tastes. The music is perhaps more of a massively male metal vibe. No surprise your lovely, discerning, delicate ears find it a little, umm, heavy. :)

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