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The Sword- Warp Riders (Album Review)

With its Hawkwind-esque cover art and baffling sci-fi concept (something about an exiled archer’s quest to restore the balance of his home planet), you can’t accuse The Sword of pandering to the hipster-metal (shudder) demographic on this, their third full-length. On the contrary, ‘Warp Riders’ tones down the brazen Sabbath worship of old, instead plunging headlong into the realm of southern-fried hard rock – just check out strutting lead single ‘Tres Brujas’. Have no fear, though, as the riffs remain as ample and hard-hitting as ever, and with Matt Bayles (Isis, Mastodon) handling the production, The Sword have never sounded better.