Friday, June 26, 2015

Friday Night Videos: The Sword

Welcome back to Friday Night Videos.

Tonight I want to focus on just one band, but one that I really identify with the entire OSR and nostalgia D&D movement.

The Sword hit my awareness in 2008 or so with their album "Gods of this Earth".  Right around the same time this blog got going.

Like the retro-D&D/OSR/Nostalgia movement The Sword was a new thing that sounded like an old thing from the 70s.  In this case a band that had a similar vibe to Slayer to sound like Black Sabbath.  In any case it worked.

Fire Lances of the Ancient Hyperzephyrians was the first single from "Gods of the Earth".  It sounds old school and the video is something right out of Ralph Bakshi.  The biggest influence is obviously Bakshi's Wizards.  Confession time. I am not a fan of Wizards.  Never saw the appeal. I also don't care for rotoscoping.

If any song captures this retro-feel of The Sword the best it's How Heavy This Axe. The video even looks like something filmed the same day Black Sabbath filmed Paranoid or Iron Man.  Plus this was also the theme song to +Zak Smith and gang's "I Hit it with My Axe".  That gives it OSR street cred right there. Or it gave them cred.  Not sure which.

What can I honestly say about Maiden Mother Crone?
Well for starters it is easily my favorite song from The Sword.  Plus there are great allusions to Pagan myths and witchcraft.  In true heavy metal cliche fashion it has a "mystical orb" at the end (3:30 mark).  I am sure that was done completely tongue in cheek.  But still it's pretty awesome.

I listened to this a lot when working on The Witch.

Tres Brujas or "Three Witches" came along later.  It mixes in elements of Westerns, sci-fi, witchcraft (again) and Kung-fu (the TV show).  So yeah...sounds a bit like the AD&D DMG.

Veil of Isis is a newer song.  The video reminds me a bit of some of the videos of the later 80s, before Grunge took over. Still it's a pretty cool song.

You can find The Sword on the web at


Anonymous said...

The appeal of Wizards? Well, I think you had to be a fantasy geek in the late '70s (when there wasn't much cinematic competition in the genre), watching it in a midnight screening, thoroughly stoned.

I was playing D&D back then, but was pretty straight-edge, and I didn't see Wizards until a couple months ago. I didn't get it either.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

I was a fantasy geek then. Been playing D&D since 1979. It should have been a no brainer for me.