The Sword
Gods of the Earth


4.5
superb

Review

by sonictheplumber STAFF USER (107 Reviews)
August 15th, 2008 | 47 replies | 13,837 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Black Sabbath + Lord of the Rings + faster, thrashier sound = The Sword's second album.

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

Black Sabbath, as most people know, were the first heavy metal band (although that is debatable but I won't get into that). They often had very politically driven lyrics, as several of their songs, most notably War Pigs, were anti-war. They sang about many other topics, including Christianity, but what Sabbath were most known for was their incredibly heavy guitar work. Many bands have attempted to emulate the droning, doomish riffs of Black Sabbath, and the heavily Sabbath influenced band I'm talking about in this review is The Sword.

To some, The Sword may seem like a typical Sabbath ripoff. The vocalist obviously tries to sound sort of like Ozzy Osbourne, and the guitar work is like the album Paranoid, except much faster. Whereas Sabbath sang about war and such, The Sword have Dungeons and Dragons themed lyrics that are, unlike Dragonforce, very well written and all around cool. Although songs about axes and wizards and dark rivers get old after a while, the band keeps things interesting with stunning musicianship. The guitars are easily the best thing about Gods of the Earth. As I mentioned earlier, it's like Black Sabbath except sped up. The Sword incorporate a thrashy sound to their music, so it's like an Ozzy-era Black Sabbath/first two albums by Metallica hybrid. The drumming is like Bill Ward, except faster and a bit more insane. There are several parts where the drummer just goes crazy, although I feel the drummer was in the spotlight, therefore better, on the band's previous album, which was also their debut, Age of Winters.

The best song on the album is the opener, which comes along after the insanely heavy instrumental, How Heavy This Axe. It's everything good about this band: It's heavy, it's fast, it's got great vocals, amazing musicianship, and a memorable chorus. It too sounds very thrashy, much like many other songs on the album. I feel that the biggest improvement over their debut was the addition of a thrashy sound. It's not like Overkill or D.R.I., but it's got a thrash feel to it.

One thing that The Sword excels at is making well-thought out, awe-inspiring instrumentals. So far, each of their albums have opened with an instrumental song and of the two, the one found on Gods of the Earth is easily my favorite. A lot of times, the instrumental opener is usually a softer set-up for the heaviness that is to come, but not on this album. This song is a two minute explosion of unrelenting heaviness and crushing riffs that could make one's ears bleed, but in a good way. The closer of Gods of the Earth is also an instrumental number, entitled The White Sea, which is an epic, seven minute masterpiece with everything about The Sword all in one song. Some parts of so heavy they could smash you, and some parts are soft and melodic, but no matter what, the song is consistently stellar, and is the second best song on the album.

The Sword definitely has potential to become the next big thing in metal. Their second album, Gods of the Earth, is the band's best album so far, and I have high expectations for upcoming releases. The Sword isn't for everyone. Some will see them as a shameless rip-off of the glorious Black Sabbath. However, I find them to be an excellent band that uses their Black Sabbath influences in a good way while adding their own sound into the mix. I highly recommend them.



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user ratings (300)
Chart.
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
matt1148 (4)
The Swords second album is a very solid release with plenty of great riffs, interesting lyrics and t...

Brent Stephenson (3.5)
Break out the snack foods and viking helmets! The Sword is back!...


Comments:Add a Comment 
SHOOTME
August 15th 2008



2393 Comments


i think metallica mixed with Black Sabbath would be very very bad. Still good review.

SHOOTME
August 15th 2008



2393 Comments


I understand that, still it would be a tad awkward.

marksellsuswallets
August 15th 2008



4848 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I highly enjoy this album, as you can see by my review, but I wouldn't really say this was faster. Its fairly slow in tempo throughout actually. I kind of disagree on most of what you say about the music, while they are all extremely competent musicians, I wouldn't label the drums as "insane" or guitars "thrashey", splendid as they may be.

Though this album was great, a 4.5 is just a smidge high in my opinion, but to each his own.

Good review though.

Poet
August 15th 2008



5920 Comments


these guys are touring with Metallica actually.

marksellsuswallets
August 15th 2008



4848 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Off topic but, as a fellow (unfortunate) inhabitant of the south, I think we should start a petition to get bands to come down here. The Sword is coming through Atlanta and then Texas actually in October I believe.

Monticello
August 15th 2008



805 Comments


I was meaning to get this actually. I enjoyed their debut. Good review.

jrowa001
August 15th 2008



8750 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

i like this album and their previous one. theyre nothing amazing but they make solid Sabbath influenced metal. i saw them open for Trivium a few years back and they were really good and heavy.

marksellsuswallets
August 15th 2008



4848 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thought it was on a Thursday...dang...well can't go that either. Don't have school on Fridays so that's opened up a lot of concert opportunities (college is awesome).

On another note, I don't really think J.D. Cronise sounds like Ozzy at all really, with the exception of how the vocals are produced with the overdubs and such, his voice is much lower and kind of has a slower southern drawl-ish quality to it. (I can see how people would think that though)

Myrrhman
August 15th 2008



83 Comments


too many ratings above bad

Slaytan
August 16th 2008



1186 Comments


Looks like I'm going to check this out. Their debut was pretty good, and this sounds better than that.

P13
August 16th 2008



1327 Comments


Freya = great

any14doomsday
August 16th 2008



679 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I was liking this when it first came out. Its much better then age of winters, which was a little bit too generic for me. But it doesn't have much staying power. I cant even remember the last time I listened to this.

Erratic
August 16th 2008



1120 Comments


I don't really like the singer all that much.

south_of_heaven 11
August 16th 2008



5433 Comments


This is not good.

Bleak123
August 16th 2008



1902 Comments


bad review needs moar neg.

Bleak123
August 16th 2008



1902 Comments


haha, i was only joking

tinathefatlard
August 16th 2008



1597 Comments


Dirty Window Shirt

musername
August 16th 2008



13 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the singer needs some work

AngelPhoenix
August 21st 2008



2764 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

The singer needs to not sing lol. This is a low 4 for me, I love the riffage, but the drums are kind of meh and the singer just annoys the hell out of me.

Oh, and solid review, but I must disagree on one thing, I feel the last two tracks are by far the best on the album and definitely the best material the sword's come up with to date. This Message Edited On 08.22.08

CushMG15
November 10th 2008



1802 Comments


Saw these guys on Saturday with Metallica and Down. They were pretty good, but the vocals were mixed waaaaay low. Sounds like that might've been a good thing tho. I"ll check 'em out further.



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