LAURENNE/LOUHIMO – The Reckoning
- by J.N.
- Posted on 30-08-2021
Frontiers Records’ endless supply of collaborations and projects put together by the label have resulted in a long line of records that range from excellent to mediocre and further on to downright awful. I was therefore rather curious as to where "The Reckoning" would find itself in and how the combo of the talented singers Netta Laurenne (Smackdown) and Noora Louhimo (Battle Beast) would turn out. The short answer to that is that this ten-track offering is a hugely entertaining listen and catchy piece of work. One of the positives here is that Netta and rhythm guitarist Nino Laurenne wrote the material themselves and that the band does not consist of some of the usual suspects from the Frontiers family of projects but instead appears to be a separate entity altogether.
Things are off to a great start with the raging metal rocker that is "Time to Kill the Night". A thunderous vibe, hard-hitting riffs, and memorable vocals are all over this driven piece and it serves as a strong tune and a good way to open the proceedings. With its thick sound and muscular production, the LP really packs a punch and is capable of making your ugly apartment walls shake. The title track boasts fantastic vocal melodies, and the chugging "Tongue of Dirt" is as heavy as they come and slightly darker than the rest of the material. On top of that, it contains an infectious chorus. "Striking Like a Thunder" is fiery as well but leans more towards hard rock and AOR, which only adds color and nuance to it, whereas "Bitch Fire" sounds like a homage to Judas Priest and is quite fierce. Actually, most of the disc is potent and enjoyable with only the power ballad "Hurricane Love" and the semi-bombastic "To the Wall" being somewhat mundane and uninteresting. Their two different vocal styles complement each other superbly and are most impressive throughout.
"The Reckoning" comes across as an inspired and incredibly well-produced effort where the musicians involved show a genuine sense of passion regarding the compositions and the delivery of those. A most pleasant surprise and a cool take on blistering yet varied heavy metal.