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CD/DVD Releases: The Sword's ''Tres Brujas'' Video Released

Posted on Friday, August 27 @ 22:00:13 UTC by nightowl

I'm sharing this item originally posted at Blabbermouth not because the band necessarily fits in the (admittedly broad) spectrum of what we cover, but because I was struck by the album cover. I'll share by thoughts below. Meanwhile, the item reads:

"Tres Brujas," the new video from Austin, Texas metal luminaries The Sword, can be viewed below. The track comes off the band's third full-length album, Warp Riders, which was released today (Tuesday, August 24) via Kemado Records. The first of a trio of conceptually linked videos ("Tres Brujas," "Lawless Lands" and "Night City") that tie in themes of Warp Riders was filmed in the hot California desert with Artificial Army. It's described in a press release as "Seven Samurai crossed with The Magnificent Seven meets Mad Max filtered through the imagination of The Sword."

Warp Riders marks the first release where the group has worked with an outside producer. Helmed by Matt Bayles (Pearl Jam, Mastodon, Isis), the album is anchored by an epic science-fiction narrative. The storyline is a psychedelic space opera that explores temporal themes of death and rebirth. Warp Riders also finds The Sword expanding its range from pure metal to include bone-crunching hard rock at large. Rather than dampening its sound, the band actually sounds more amplified than ever, spewing out some of its most scalding riffs to date and channeling an unearthly bellow from its low end.

Opening track "Acheron/Unearthing The Orb" begins with ominous, fog-drenched atmosphere before a flurry of nimble fretwork and galloping drums storm out of the gate. The energy doesn't let up once and by the final moments of closing cut, "(The Night Sky Cried) Tears Of Fire," an intensely satisfying resolution sets in. Guitarists Kyle Shutt and John "J. D." Cronise execute punishing acrobatics while injecting melody at every turn. Bryan Richie's warm bass lays down the foundation and ripples with menace. Trivett Wingo's drumming explodes with the perfect balance of both precision and dexterity.

In a recent interview with Decibel magazine, The Sword guitarist/vocalist John "J. D." Cronise stated about the forthcoming effort, "This is what you'd technically call a 'concept album,' though I'd describe it as more of a soundtrack to a story I came up with. All the songs are about aspects of the story, but they don't cover every detail from beginning to end. It's a science fiction story, and it deals heavily with themes of light and dark and perceptions of time. One of the main settings is a planet, which has experienced tidal locking, creating a side of perpetual day and a side of perpetual night. The reason for creating a narrative to base the songs around was essentially to provide interesting and varied lyrical subject matter with a core theme to tie it all together."

Cronise previously told AOL's Noisecreep that Warp Riders will have a broader hard rock sound but stressed that the band's aim isn't to broaden its appeal outside of the heavy metal market. "If more people listen that's great, but we're not doing it for that reason," he said. "We are just more interested in expanding our sound for ourselves. If we wanted to expand our audience we should just remake the second album over again, rather than challenge people with something new."

Warp Riders track listing:

01. Acheron/Unearthing The Orb
02. Tres Brujas
03. Arrows In The Dark
04. The Chronomancer I: Hubris
05. Lawless Lands
06. Astraea's Dream
07. The Warp Riders
08. Night City
09. The Chronomancer II: Nemesis
10. (The Night the Sky Cried) Tears Of Fire

View The Video

So, my thoughts on the album artwork. What struck me is that I thought back to the cover artwork of some of the early Star Trek novels I'd read years ago (here's a site that has images of the covers: trekkieguy.com/reviews_covers.shtml); and then further back to SF covers of the 70s (maybe even earlier, maybe even later). I'm sure it's deliberate, because if you go to their website, you will recall the late 70s/early 80s sci-fi era. You need only look back at poster artwork for, say, Battlestar Galactica (the orignal series), Star Wars, Buck Rogers (the Gil Gerard TV series), etc. Actually, the graphic on their home page (not the splash page), the background of it, reminded me of Bonestell. As for the splash page, I think of another SF artist, one whose name is just out of my mind's grasp; following links from The Sword's site, I'd venture the artist here is Geoff Kern. You can see the album artwork much larger at Kemado's website.

[Source: Blabbermouth, The Sword website and PW's editor's brain]

Posted in Album Release News