If nothing else, Days of Yore deserves an award for the elaborate packaging of their album, The Mad God's Wage: the CD and accompanying full-color book come inside a handsome oversized box. Looking at the product, one cannot help but think "…yeah, the presentation is great, but is it any good?"
The answer is: yes and no.
The chief complaints about Days of Yore seem to fall into two categories: (a) the drums and bass are programmed, and (b) the vocals are screechy and terrible.
I can respond to both of those. First of all, although the drums and bass are indeed programmed, they don't really sound like it; if you weren't aware that they were, there's a good chance that you might not notice.
As far as the vocals: yes, Jerome Parent hits some unfortunate notes at times, and his tone is definitely a bit raw. But most of the people I've heard doing the complaining are also fans of Accept (a band which features some of the worst vocals ever put on record), so what the hell do they know, anyway?
Some comparisons are being drawn between this album and Blind Guardian. That is more of a compliment than Days of Yore deserves, but it does a good job of describing the music: ultra fast riffery, tons of lyrics and an unabashedly retro kind of heaviness.
The story which comprises The Mad God's Wage is typical metal-fantasy stuff, and it's an admirable attempt, even though the grammar and spelling are pretty poor in places.
While not necessarily a great album on its own, The Mad God's Wage is an entertaining package when taken as a whole. Clearly a labor of love, it's worth the cover price merely to see the amount of energy that has gone into the presentation.