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ICED EARTH-5


ICED EARTH 

"Incorruptible"

By Colonel Angus
 
It has been quite a while since I sat down and really listened to an Iced Earth album.  The last disk I purchased was "Horror Show" back in 2001 but I have heard their output from friends who played their disks whenever I was around.  I also saw them on a few tours and always enjoyed their shows but at the end of the day, I was never really a full-fledged fan.  That being said, Jon Schaffer and company have always delivered whether live or studio.  This new release continues their trend of putting out quality albums, this time without the concept.  What they deliver is a batch of catchy metal tunes that stay true to their original metal roots with hints of power metal and prog (the same way Iron Maiden use prog elements). 

The disk starts off in fine form with “Great Heathen Army” and doesn’t let up until the last notes of “Clear The Way (December 13, 1862)”.  Many of the tracks take on an epic feel while others like “Brothers” and “Defiance” just storm out of the gates without any build-up.  As far as epic tunes, look no further than “Black Flag” and “Raven Wing”.  These two tracks stand out on this disk as being the cream of the crop in what I would say is a solid offering from Iced Earth.  Stu Block is back again handling vocals for this release and while I though his delivery was little bit guttural on the opening cut, he shows his range and diversity throughout the rest of the tracks.  Speaking of diversity, "Incorruptible" flows between traditional metal to power metal making it really enjoyable for the listener.  More power metal outfits should take note because I find a lot of them boring after the fourth or fifth song due to the one dimensionality of their albums. " Incorruptible" does not suffer from that and in fact, whoever decided on the track order should be given special kudos for making an album that flows well.

I don’t know if this release will gather new fans (although I think it should) but it will make casual fans like me stand up and take notice.  On the strength of "Incorruptible", I am going to purchase their two previous albums and even though this just came out, I can’t wait to hear what these guys have in store for us next.