Despite logistics problems and lineup changes during the recording process of Reckoning Day, Swiss Metal act Emerald have managed to craft a genuinely enjoyable and memorable Traditional Power Metal album. The release at times dips into concept album territory, but it never becomes ponderous or superfluous. Each song stands well on its own. Even with the included transitional tracks, Reckoning Day remains a pounding, fist pumping collection of true Metal anthems that will please fans of Manowar, Saxon, Messiah’s Kiss, Hammerfall and perhaps the heavier works of Stratovarius. Production of the album is a bit dry at times, but still majestic sounding enough to please the most elite Power Metal fans. Song structures are traditional but without being too familiar sounding and even though the album has a 1 hour + running time, it goes by quickly and enjoyably.
Highlights include the addictive “Horns Up”, the speedy and intense “Evolution In Reverse” and the absolutely thunderous “Only The Reaper Wins”.
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