PHOTO ESSAY: Clutch and the Sword

On Veteran’s Day, Clutch and the Sword—two high-caliber, road-tested rock ‘n’ roll bands—blasted their way through one of the best shows of the year at Ace of Spades. Clutch singer Neil Fallon, looking fully recovered from a September back surgery for cervical spinal stenosis and two herniated discs, was in fine form as he led his band through a set that drew heavily from Earth Rocker, one of this year’s finest heavy music releases. The group’s set was highlighted by guitarist Tim Sult’s remarkable mastery of the wah-wah pedal and Jean-Paul Gaster’s ultra-efficient drumming. 

The Sword has moved to the forefront of the stoner metal movement with its sound, which lies somewhere between Black Sabbath, Metallica and Thin Lizzy. The band’s set drew from this year’s excellent Apocryphon and also included the legendary cut “Freya.” 

Jean-Paul Gaster of Clutch.

Neil Fallon of Clutch.

Tim Sult of Clutch.

Bryan Richie of the Sword.

Santiago “Jimmy” Vela III of the Sword.

John D. Cronise of the Sword.

Kyle Shutt of the Sword.

—Paul Piazza

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