by The Sword
While I am not sure a concert filled with sounds of High Country alone would keep me dancing the entire night, I am not sure that was their goal. If they were set to explore all that they could do, The Sword was successful overall, and wildly so in a handful of tunes.
My favorite song on the album is “The Bees of Spring,” with its fantastic guitar work that carries through a set of genre changes within the song.
Then, along comes “Tears Like Diamonds” and you are up out of your chair looking for some people to run into. “Mist and Shadow” follows and prepares me to grow my hair long again and start carrying a sign and protesting something. These songs have the most incredible guitar riffs that supports the laid back vocals. It has become my absolute favorite song.
Overall, this album is worth owning. You can listen to it in almost any mood. Feeling contemplative? It will catch your mind and drag your body off the couch. Feeling frustrated and angry? It will capture that anger, beat it out of you and leave you quietly relaxing in the nearest beanbag chair.
The Sword has figured out how to fit in both at Knotfest and Woodstock. They have made sixties protest music accessible to metal fans and have not sacrificed their sound. While I would not argue it is the best album to play live, there are some great songs that will mix well into their upcoming national tour, and make their shows that much more enjoyable. That is definitely a plus since I will see The Sword AT LEAST twice in October, catching them them in San Diego and at Monster Energy’s Aftershock Festival. On top of that, I may get to see their San Francisco show. I have seen The Sword about four or five times, and their live shows are one of the best. They tore up the Hard Rock Stage at Rocklahoma, blew Clutch away on tour, and then headlined at the Anaheim House of Blues, a show that will forever remain etched in my mind and body…it was that intense.
If you are not yet a fan of The Sword, go buy High Country and then get out to Aftershock and absolutely do not miss their show. It will be a highlight of the weekend.
Dan Adler was raised in Southern California to a mom and dad, one of whom appreciated Creedence and left wing anti-war politics. By the teenage years, Dan became obsessed with Black Sabbath, listening to the same seven albums repeatedly for 5 years. During this time, his favorite concert experience was seeing Metallica open for a bunch of bands that no longer exist and winning the 1st ever Santa Cruz Air Guitar contest. After several years in Africa listening and dancing to Chimurenga music, Dan returned to have the two best children in the world, one of whom spends a lot of time at concerts with him. What a lucky dad!