This gemstone starts out truly majestic with the instrumental "Battle Cry", fully in tradiiton of the "Killers"-album of IRON FUCKING MAIDEN! The instrumental turns into the brilliant title-track. The first sledgehammer that contains everything that the Metal-fan needs. Great riffs, a memorable, not too high voice and a chorus that grabs you by the balls! All in the tradition of acts like OMEN, SAVAGE GRACE or HELSTAR the MAIDEN-influences cannot be missed. "When The Daylight Fades" then is a fast cracker, again with brilliant vocals and nice solos.
But than follows the song that has completely ironed me. "The Dagger's Blade", a US-Metal-hymn, with fantastic riffing, a killer-chorus and power to last years. Straight and to the point is this song just perfect and will eternally occupy a place in my personal Metal-Olympus! And this has not been all. In quick succession TWISTED TOWER DIRE show that they claim the underground-crown. One excellent US-Metal-song after the other. "The Longing", "Final Stand" or the JAG PANZER-reminiscent "Sign Of The Storm" (just listen to the chorus, get it?) all are royal compositions, which more than deserve to be called "precious metal"! The purely acoustic "Dying Breath" almost ends this incredible work. Almost because as hidden bonus-track we get "A Dangerous Meeting" by MERCYFUL FATE, a more than appealing homage!
This album pulverises all superlatives and should be to the liking of any IRON MAIDEN-, JUDAS PRIEST-, but also HAMMERFALL-fan! In the meantime the album is also available on CD, before it had only been out on vinyl. That one, I think, had another bonus-song. Both versions can be ordered via Hellion-mailorder! Who does not get this one, well, it'll be your own fault, even more because the album has a great packaging and a powerful, crystal-clear sound! I can assure you that you will get one of, if not the album of the year 2002 (And that just one week after New Year!). Pure magic!