Living in the Gleam of an Unsheathed Sword was my first introduction to Earth, the band comprised of guitarist, Dylan Carlson and percussionist, A. Davies. The music is very heavy and quite dark at times. I suppose this might be considered characteristic of heavy metal, but it quickly became evident the CD’s two instrumental tracks were the furthest thing from typical.
“Dissolution III” is a nearly fifteen minute song recorded live on WNYU Radio on September 17, 2002. A Carlson solo, it is hard edged guitar pushed to the limit and beyond. At first I wasn’t sure if it was something I was going to enjoy, but as it progressed I found myself really feeling the intensity. “Dissolution III” is strong, and expressive. It also has an improvisational feel that comes from being played live that I appreciated.
Davies joins Carlson on “Living in the Gleam of an Unsheathed Sword.” Recoded live in NYC on the same date, it runs a full fifty-eight minutes. Though sometimes repetitive, the music is over all very animated, heavy and powerful. The addition of drums was a huge plus for me and before long I found myself tapping to driving beat.
Overall, Living in the Gleam of an Unsheathed Sword is as sharp and cutting edge as the name would imply.