The Sword

On their next album, Austin, Texas stoner doomsters the Sword will be ditching the lyrical themes of old (sorcerers, mythology, ravens) for something a little more 2010: They're going sci-fi, building the entire album around a story that takes place not in the future but some otherworldly dominion with spaceships and robots. Frontman J.D. Cronise is well aware that the shift could turn some of their longtime fans off, but it's a risk he had to take.

"It will absolutely alienate some fans," Cronise told Noisecreep. "The kind of music we play is partially described as heavy metal and unfortunately, a lot of dudes that like heavy metal are very narrow-minded and only like it to sound one particular way. So I'm sure we alienated people with our second album. "

It's just as simple as that, and Cronise knows it. "I'm sure there are people who only like the first Sword album, and that'll be the only one they ever buy, and then there will be people who only like the first two and think the third one sucks," he continues. "There will always be those kinds of people, but you try to reach the greater masses that have a little bit more ... open minds and just let those people enjoy the one record they like or whatever."

Cronise assured Noisecreep that this recent shift in lyrical focus won't have any vast stylistic impact on the band's sound. They're still going to be sludgy and ferocious with riffs that are still going to have you punching the sky.

"There'll definitely still be heavy stuff on the record, and fast, thrashy, and slow and sludgy stuff like we've done before," Cronise explains. "Heavy metal, basically. But a lot of the songs are just what I'd call hard rock songs. The attitude and the vibe is different. It's not as aggressive, sonically. It's a little bit more ... I don't know how to explain it. It's just rock. It's a rock album. Some parts will be heavier than the heaviest stuff we've done, but at the same time, there will be acoustic stuff. It is a varied record, I guess.

"I just hope people don't think ... I think there will be people who, after the first listen, will think we sold out and got soft," he explains. "But, you listen to it again, and its just going to be so good that its not going to matter that it doesn't sound as much like Sleep or Black Sabbath as you wanted it to."

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