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The Sword – High Country – Album Review

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The Sword
High Country
Razor & Tie
Release Date: 21 August 2015
Review by Kevin Prested

The first noticeable thing about The Sword’s latest, and fifth album release is the striking artwork, which sits well in line with bands stand alone cannon of releases. Even though the band has not largely strayed from its sound since debut Age Of Winters with its massive stoner rock riffs sitting in between some thrashier moments, they have always had a knack releasing records with the distinct feeling that each one stood on it’s own merits, cleverly using magnificent artwork to create different worlds.

The much lighter artwork themed High Country however, manages to capture a much bigger step away from the bands sound as much as its sleeve, and in a good way. From instrumental opener Unicorn Farm, it’s obvious the huge crushing riffs have been switched with an overall more psychedelic and lighter classic rock flavour than previous releases. Think less Sabbath and more Thin Lizzy.

The Sword’s identity is still well in tact, although there are some exciting new dynamics on show with more emphasis on texture and atmosphere on Mist and Shadow with its open spaces, and the Italian horror soundtrack sounding ‘Agartha’.

Instrumentally heavy, High Country is an incredibly positive step forward following the water treading Apocryphon, signalling the band has an exciting new phase ahead.

 

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