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The Sword’s Kyle Shutt Discusses ‘Apocryphon,’ New Drummer, Texas Roots + More

The Sword
Photo Credit: Sandy Carson

The Sword guitarist Kyle Shutt was the guest on Full Metal Jackie’s radio show this past weekend. Shutt spoke about the band’s latest album ‘Apocryphon,’ their new drummer Jimmy Vela and what it is about being from Texas that influences their sound. Read Full Metal Jackie’s interview with Kyle Shutt below:

Congratulations on another great record, ‘Apocryphon.’

Thank you, it took a long time, sitting around waiting for it to come out. I’m glad it’s finally out and we’re out on the road supporting it. It’s good times.

It’s stressful right, when you have this record and you know there are some people that have it. Isn’t it like a freaky, scary time where you’re like ‘Is it going to leak? When is it going to leak?’ and you just want it to be out there and done.

Yeah, that’s right. Everything’s going to leak eventually but it was about a week before when we saw some evidence of it leaking so we did a good job, keeping it under wraps.

Obviously, a lot had happened since the last time I saw you guys. You have a new member in the band.

Yeah we’ve had two drummers since you last saw us but this guy, Jimmy Vela, he’s great. He fit right in with the band, honestly it feel like he’s been in it the whole time – I wish he had been, but that’s okay. [Laughs]

Tell us what it’s been like touring with your new drummer.

We did some tours with him before we made the album, one with the Kyuss Lives! thing that they did, we did a whole North American tour and it was good. When we started writing songs in January, we got about six of them written in a month. It just started flowing out and he fell right in line with our style of music and he plays with a little more finesse than Trivett [Wingo] did. It was fun just playing off each other and writing new songs.

Unlike the last album, the new one ‘Apocryphon’ isn’t a concept album. Musically, these songs aren’t so much about precision either. Was that a conscious decision to cleanse the musical pallet so to speak or was it just naturally distancing yourselves from the previous album cycle?

No, honestly we just write ten songs at a time and the only reason the last album was a concept album was because J.D. [Cronise] had written this awesome story and it just felt appropriate to apply it to the songs we had written.

These are just the next ten songs we’ve written and we’re moving on, we’re not going to try to rehash old stuff – just shake it up and be original and try to write some great music.

It’s not uncommon for bands to alternate setlists but on this tour, you’ve got several – seven I think is what I read. What is the purpose of having that many options?

We kind of just shake it up every night so you don’t get board. I’ve seen bands go on an eight week tour and play the exact same set every night. It’s not that ours is wildly different every night but we try to throw in some different songs here and there just to keep things fresh. Sometimes people will drive from show to show so you don’t want to disappoint them, you know they see you four times and it’s all the same set.

You guys are from Texas, what about coming from that part of the country affects your approach to metal the most both as players and as fans?

Really, I think we have this funky rhythm section that a lot of people when they play metal it’s just a straight forward four-four thing just trying to be as relentless as possible but we just try to be as funky as we can so people can dance to our music. I think that’s what sets us apart from a lot of the things like that – being from Texas, too, you got bands like Pantera and ZZ Top and all kinds of funky, rock and roll music, it’s just in our blood down there. [Laughs]

What can we expect from 2013?

We’re going to be on the road forever on this one. We’ll be everywhere twice. So just hang tight people: if we haven’t been there yet, we’ll make an appearance very shortly I promise.

Full Metal Jackie will welcome As I Lay Dying frontman Tim Lambesis to her program this coming weekend. She can be heard on radio stations around the country — for a full list of stations, go to fullmetaljackieradio.com.

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