Personal opinions, rants, raves, links and info from the Editor in Chief of Austin Vida and Red River Noise.
Friday, October 10, 2008
The Sword Rocks the Earth at Stubb's
Saturday night the rock God’s of the Earth touched down on Austin and brought us my absolute favorite metal band, The Sword. The Sword hail from Austin, so I guess this was a homecoming show for them after touring with Metallica overseas. Saturday night at Stubb’s, they opened for Clutch. They seem to be doing pretty well for themselves in the black t shirt world.
Saturday couldn’t have been a better night for The Sword. Stubb’s outdoor is the best venue to see a show in Austin…when the weather is nice that is. The last time I saw the Sword was in January at Emo’s. At that time their latest album "Gods of the Earth" was not out yet and they only performed a couple of tracks off the album. After months of listening to it since its spring release, I was more than ready for this show. I knew in January they were playing some serious next level music. At this point and from here on out, they are so far ahead of everyone else.
How Metallica and Clutch could let them open baffles me. On one hand they get to play with The Sword and help draw in new fans, putting together a better show. On the other hand, the one I consider to be the stronger hand, The Sword will one up you. Maybe it is to pass the torch and for The Sword to live out their dreams of playing with those guys. Still, playing with either of those bands is a testament to the respect they have in the metal world.
As soon as they came on, they played their Gods of the Earth album intro, making the crowd scream and throw up their metal horns. By that point it was dark outside with only the stage lights keeping them visible to the packed crowd. Their title track Gods of the Earth, the third song on their set, got the pit started. It pretty much continued throughout the rest of the set. My body was a little sore from just being in there for fifteen minutes. I know better, but that rush one gets when your face is rocked off overcomes you and you have to get that energy out in a pit.
The Sword didn’t really say much. They did introduce the band at one point, and said “this is an older one for you” before breaking into their Guitar Hero II song Freya (By the way, that is the only song I can play on expert. I can’t be touched on Freya). What else took me by surprise was that they did a Kiss cover right before that. I don’t listen to too much Kiss, so I honestly didn’t’ recognize the song. I just found it funny given that I tell people who never heard of The Sword that they came from the seventies as the demon rock child of Black Sabbath and Led Zeplin. Kiss is more of old style camaro mullet rock, but whatever.
Overall, this was the best I have ever heard The Sword play. They get better every time I see them. I become a bigger fan every time I hear them. Not since Rage Against the Machine or early Metallica (Kill Em All & And Justice For All era) have I been this excited about a band. I even started a Sword tattoo I am going to base a sleeve around.
I did not stay for Clutch Saturday. I had other obligations downtown Saturday night, but I heard from friends who stayed that they were good. I was wondering who stayed as I saw many people leave after The Sword finished. Plus, I have seen Clutch before in San Antonio at The White Rabbit a long time ago. One Clutch show was good enough for me. As for The Sword, I can’t get enough. If they come to town, I’m there. If they put out a new album, I buy the CD and the vinyl. If you don’t like metal, The Sword will change that. I know fans Saturday who were seeing them for the first time, will see them again. In case you are lame and missed the best concert this year, here is a clip of the show for you:
Ian is a graduate of Round Rock High School and attended St Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. In 2008 he joined the team at Double Stereo (formerly CD Fuse) as their Blog editor where he reviewed concerts, albums, and did interviews for the popular music site.In January 2009, he became the Editor in Chief for Austin Vida. In 2010, with the help of some of his most talented friends, he launched Red River Noise. "Ian's Music Blog" is also one of the few blogs selected to be a Do512 All-Star.
On any given night of the week he can be found in downtown Austin on 6th Street and the Red River live music district.