About The Sword
New York, NY
"The best band I saw [at SXSW 2005] was called THE SWORD, this metal band from Austin. They're sort of like BLACK SABBATH Vol. 4, sort of like early PRONG, sort of like IRON MAIDEN...like a bunch of bison being pushed over a cliff."
” the four Swordsmen are stealth assailants, mutating from sludgy to melodic so discreetly it leaves a bruise. Brain-melting guitar licks…bass and drums like meteors…heavy.”
– AUSTIN CHRONICLE
…THE SWORD is the soul of the warrior. Therefore, when the warrior is the subject, the sword inevitably comes with him.
THE SWORD is a colossal, high-energy powerhouse. Utilizing a potent combination of intense songwriting chemistry, eye-opening creativity and talent and a distinctly unique vision, THE SWORD is, without question, one of heavy music’s most electrifying new bands.
Conceived in Austin, TX in 2003, THE SWORD took the form of a cohesive quartet in early 2004 when guitarist / singer J.D. Cronise, guitarist Kyle Shutt, bassist Bryan Richie, and drummer Trivett Wingo joined forces. Inspired by such legendary names as SLEEP, SLAYER and THE MELVINS, the four-piece immediately began to construct the songs that would soon comprise their initial demo recording.
THE SWORD has a double office to perform: to destroy anything that opposes the will of its user and to sacrifice all the impulses that arise from the instinct of self-preservation.
THE SWORD’s live shows quickly became the hottest ticket in Austin, as their punishing, yet melodious compositions, mythical imagery and conscious effort to slowly immobilize audiences left music fans astonished while word about the band continued to flourish and grow. Less than a year after their formation, THE SWORD became known as “Austin's most dangerous band”.
Soon, an increased number of regional live dates had gained the band an army of followers. That, combined with a devastating performance at SXSW 2004, led to the band sharing the stage with respected noise heroes like JUCIFER, DON CABELLERO and MASTODON. In April, 2004, THE SWORD was invited to hit the road alongside fellow Austin music heroes …AND YOU WILL KNOW US BY THE TRAIL OF DEAD. The month-long tour introduced their formidable live show to thousands of stunned new devotees along the east coast and Midwest U.S.
…very frequently THE SWORD may simply mean pure destruction, and then it is the symbol of force, sometimes devilish force.
Following another much-talked about performance at SXSW 2005 and the awareness of the quartet’s talent at an all-time high, the band found a home in diverse NYC label Kemado Records. A number of new songs already in hand, songwriting for the band’s debut full-length immediately resumed.
The band's first album was released in February of 2006. Age of Winters is a mind-blowing, nine-song journey inside the mysterious, yet concrete world THE SWORD call their own. Recorded at Austin’s Folkvang Studios, the album was engineered by bassist Richie and produced by frontman J.D. Cronise, ensuring the complete capture of the hard-earned sound the band has worked so tirelessly to achieve.
The band now prepare to release their second full-length, Gods of the Earth on April 1, 2008. Recorded at Folkvang Studios in Austin, TX, Gods of the Earth instantly conveys what words can only try to describe: THE SWORD is not to be taken lightly. From the moment the album’s lead track “The Sundering” explodes, it is immediately apparent that THE SWORD has upped the ante on a sound all its own.
More ambitious, more accomplished and simply bigger, Gods of the Earth’s huge, mountaintop-friendly hooks, thunderous drumming and oceanic bass lines cut through the air like a scythe, while the ominous vocals of frontman J.D. Cronise weave fantastical tales rife with myth and mythology. Waves of powerful riffs and low-end thunder dominate songs such as the immediate “Maiden, Mother & Crone”, “Fire Lances of the Ancient Hyperzephyrians”, “Under the Boughs” and the paralyzing “The Black River”.