Swordedge – A Great Yet Underrated English Folk Rock Band

Swordedge was an English folk/folk rock band from the north east of England which was active during the late 1970s and in 1980, the year during which they released their debut namesake studio album. The band was a trio which consisted of the following musicians:

  • Sue Fenwick – lead vocals, psaltery, and bodhrán;
  • David Smith – guitar;
  • John Davies – vocals, guitar, and flute.

The three members listed above constituted the line-up which is credited for the band’s only LP released in 1980. In the past, there used to be another musician associated with the band, more specifically Alan Watson, but he was replaced by John Davies from Wales.

The band’s debut eponymous studio album included traditional English folk material as well as original songs. Rosemary Lane is a prominent example of the traditional English folk material which the band covered for their debut and only LP in their discography. The group’s overall sound is a mixture of chamber folk, neo-medieval folk, and other sub-genres of folk and folk rock.

The frontal cover artwork of Swordedge’s only studio album which was privately released in 1980. Image source: Blogspot

Although initially privately released, the Swordedge album was subsequently re-released through Guerssen Records many years later, becoming a much sought after collector’s choice for English folk rock fans. The band is known to have concerted not only in the United Kingdom but also in Germany and the Netherlands during its relatively brief existence.

If you like Pentangle, Jacqui McShee, Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, or Folkal Point (or English folk and folk rock music in general), then I am certain you will enjoy listening to the entire debut self-titled studio album by Swordedge! Here is a personal selection of some of my most favourite songs from the record, embedded below via YouTube. Enjoy and all the best!

Documentation sources and external links:

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