One of Boise's newest, most-hyped electronic musicians centers his music on anonymity. Already a long-standing Boise DJ, Magic Sword closely guards his identity with his latest project.
"One, I think it kind of adds to the whole concept of the album, and also it's kind of a clean slate. There's no preconceived notion of what it's going to be," Magic Sword told Boise Weekly. "Plus it can be creepy."
Magic Sword's much-anticipated first show took place at China Blue during Treefort Music Fest in March 2013. Before that, the project existed only on the popular music-sharing service SoundCloud.
On stage, he took on the persona of The Keeper, wearing a black fencing mask rimmed with glowing lights. A huge crowd roared as he produced a glowing, LED-studded sword, from which he derives his name, toward the end of the set.
"It's not a new concept, really," he explained. "It's the same old play on 'The One Sword,' like Excalibur, which when held by the right person, will save the world or save a group of people. The whole concept behind it is when someone's in need, the magic sword will save them."
During performances, another masked collaborator plays guitar, which Magic Sword's creator believes adds an extra element to the electronic performance.
"I'm kind of standing behind this table, and even though I'm twisting knobs and maybe playing a little bit of keys and pushing buttons, I feel that can be boring at times," he said. "The guitar adds more of an organic feel."
: A forthcoming album will include a comic book and other visual art pieces, which add to the story of The Keeper. He describes Magic Sword as more of a collective, focusing not just on electronic music but an entire spectrum of arts.
"I feel like it's as important as the music, having the visual aid there; a comic book to thumb through while you're listening to it. That will help people get the concept of the album a little better. We try to model the music after a soundtrack more than anything else," he said.
In that way, the live performances are more attempts to bring The Keeper into the world as a real force, literally bringing art to life. All those components combine to foster a deeper connection with audiences.
"We wanted to create a whole experience. It's not just about music. It's definitely about the visuals and the art," he said. "I think the music is only half of it."