Having been given a free pass to mainstream exposure when a cover of their track "Freya" surfaced in the bazillion-selling "Guitar Hero II" videogame; The Sword have quickly broadened their cleave into metals collective consciousness. In turn, the fierce battles they wage on "Gods Of The Earth" should only take their conquest further as mythology is once again met with metal and forged anew.
The thing that sets apart this latest slab of of riffage is not the lingering scent of weed and stains of Norse ale however. No, what makes "Gods Of The Earth" step out from behind the shadow of its predecessor is the sense of scale the songs now possess. The songwriting has grown to be quite elaborate and direct while still retaining the whole Black Sabbath/Pentagram charm of face value simplicity.
This is entirely endearing as the band churn through stoner-friendly jaunts of smoldering riffs, engaging lyrical storytelling and rock solid rhythms. The detached sense of omnipresence given to the battle-laden tales fits snugly and the group accordingly match the mood with a seemingly primitive, albeit entirely effective, set of tools. A love for instrumentals gives ample breathing room and ensures time for reflection and while things can get a little Viking folky near the end; the band stay a course modern enough to appeal to various generations, if not cultures, of metal heads. All hail The Sword.
(4 / 5)