EMERALD — Reckoning Day (review)

EMERALD — Reckoning Day album cover Album · 2017 · Power Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
Kev Rowland
Apparently, this Swiss band has been around for twenty years, and this is their seventh album, but it’s my first time coming across them. They have had a few problems recently though, most notably with singers as they parted with their long-time vocalist after the last album, replaced him, and have then had to find a replacement for him as well, although they have included two songs featuring his vocals on here. But as well as the changes brought about by eventually finding Mace Mitchell (Silence Lost, Eddies Beast, The New Source), they also had to replace one of the guitarists and the bass player, so there has been quite a lot going on.

So, it wouldn’t have been much of a surprise if this had been a dog of an album, but nothing could be further from the truth as this is very good indeed. It is power metal, with much more of a bottom end than bands such as Savatage, with plenty of melody and balls. There is no inclination that they have been suffering with line-up issues, as they all know what they’re doing and sound as if they’ve been together for many years instead of just a few. I don’t know who is responsible for the production on this, which is a shame, as whoever it is they have done an incredible job. They have kept it polished and tight, but let the power and bombast come through and also knows what tricks to pull – the backing vocals on “Beyond Forever” example, takes the song to a whole new level, and then they follow that with the breathtaking riffing of “Through The Storm” which owes far more to Helloween than anyone else. This is worth further investigation, and I hope that this provides the momentum for the band to be more active in the future.
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