Review: Sword – lll
Massacre Records (November 25th, 2022)
Reviewer: Dan Mann
Canadian heavy rockers Sword are back with new album ‘lll‘, the band’s first new album, excluding 2016’s ‘Live At The Hammersmith Odeon‘ and ‘The Best Of Sword‘ (2006) since 1988!
I was excited when ‘Live At The Hammersmith Odeon‘ was released, this was my first introduction to the band, not the album, but the actual gig itself, when Sword were the openers for Motörhead at Hammy O.
I rushed out and bought Sword‘s debut album ‘Metalised‘, which blew me away, and is still one of my all time favorite heavy metal releases by any band.
Anyway, jump forward to 2022 and we have ‘III‘, the band’s third studio album. There was some trepidation when I first pressed play on the promo. Would it live up to expectations, or would it fall flat on its face?
Thankfully ‘III‘ fits in the pheww catagory, ladies and gentlemen, Sword are back! When I say back, I don’t mean a rerun of ‘Metalized‘ or its follow up ‘Sweet Dreams‘. Whilst Sword consist of the original line-up of Rick Hughes on vocals, Mike Plant on guitar, Mike Larock on bass and Dan Hughes on drums, they haven’t sat still. Instead the guys have taken those inbetween years and refined and developed that classic Sword sound.
What that meant for me was it took several listens before the album really came alive. I began to fully understand and enjoy the maturing of the sound and songwriting. If your a fellow Sword fan, you may initially feel slightly disappointed or flat, but stick with it, give it plenty of repeat plays and you too will realise that Sword have lost none of what made you a fan in the first place.
Stand out tracks for me would be ‘Dirty Pig‘, the far too short instrumental ‘Surfacing‘ and ‘Unleashing Hell‘.
I hope Sword receive a warm welcome back from fans as I for one would love to see them release more new albums in the future.
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