The Sword's J.D. Cronise is just a regular dude who listens to R. Kelly and Michael Jackson

Formed nearly a decade ago in Austin, Texas, the Sword, with its sludgy guitar work and the fantastical themes of its lyrics, is often assigned the stoner rock designation, and understandably so. But while the band certainly bears the clear influence of bands like Black Sabbath, Sleep and Led Zeppelin, it has also developed into a solid hard rock band in its own right that merits consideration outside of some subgenre tag. On the outfit's latest record, Apocryphon, frontman J.D. Cronise displays a clever use of obscure language and a willingness to expose his personal experiences in the lyrics rather than relying on pure fiction. We recently spoke with Cronise about Led Zeppelin, misconceptions about people in metal bands and how his interest in the mystical stemmed from his desire to know the truth about the world beyond the official version.

See also: - Tuesday: the Sword at Bluebird Theater, 12/4/12 - J.D. Cronise of The Sword shares advice from Lars Ulrich of Metallica, 6/21/11 - Profile: This doom metal comes endorsed by Metallica, 4/24/08 - Review: The Sword at the Ogden Theatre, 10/06/10

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.