Overdrive – “Swords And Axes” (1984)

Do the bands Axewitch, Heavy Load, Saigon, Wizz, 220 Volt, or Glory Bells mean anything to you?  No?  THEN YOU SUCK!

Mid-eighties Swedish metal was the balls.  Sadly, most American listeners never got a chance to experience the greatness of Swedish metal back in the eighties.  These albums never washed up on our shores to any significant degree.  Well, there is no better time than the present to start investigating these Nordic treasures.  Several years ago, I began devouring Swedish metal like Homer Simpson devours donuts, and I can honestly say I am truly a better man for of it!  (Just kidding, I’m still an a-hole!)

Overdrive!  Swords And Axes is one of those sterling jewels of Scandinavian steel.  This nine song LP (Planet records) is book-ended by two amazing tracks; Dream Away and Broken Hearted.  The former, a riff-tastic barnstormer, the latter, an articulate quasi-ballad.  Both carry with them emotional wreckage that borders on soul-crushing.  In fact, all of Swords And Axes comes shrouded in a black cloud of broken dreams.  All delivered with passion and fury.  Guitar tandem Janne Stark and Kjell Jacobsson dished out ferocious riffs and melodic leads.  Vocalist Pelle Thuresson sounded a bit teen-aged, but delivered a fine vocal performance.  My only quibble with Swords And Axes is that most of the songs run a bit longer than necessary.  But when all is said and done, the album lives up to its title; wielding a heavy axe of metal that will split you from tits to taint!  My score: A-

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One thought on “Overdrive – “Swords And Axes” (1984)

  1. The first two Overdrive LP’s “Metal Attack” and Swords and Axes” have been pressed on CD twice the first time by Rock Treasures in Japan. And then again by High Vaultage out of Germany.

    The company High Vaultage is defunct… so hopefully there will be a 3rd CD pressing of this title in the future.

    Awesome album!!

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