Iced Earth

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
I’d keep my eyes on eBay and Amazon. Some good prices that don’t link directly back to Schaffer. It’s a cool set (slightly flimsy but the quality of the five records more than makes up for that) and after having my eyes on it for a couple years now, worth the wait finally getting my hands on it.
 

MrKnickerbocker

clap hands
Ashes of Ares released a new album last week, just gave it a spin. It's basically the same as the other albums: competent musicianship and completely mediocre songs. Barlow should sound better, the vocals should be recorded better, the melodies should be better. Overall it's just very...meh.

The title track, By My Blade, and the last track (for some reason ft. Ripper) are all solid tunes I might listen to again. Or might not.

 

Boroking

In the mire of an ancient swamp
I like Monsters lament and the Iron Throne but nothing else has stood out yet. I’ll probably give it one more spin before it’s forgotten. It’s all very very ok but with no real excellence which is a shame as Barlow has a great voice
 

MrKnickerbocker

clap hands
I like Monsters lament and the Iron Throne but nothing else has stood out yet. I’ll probably give it one more spin before it’s forgotten. It’s all very very ok but with no real excellence which is a shame as Barlow has a great voice
He still sounds amazing, but the fast songs completely drown out the vocals (and the melodies aren't good to begin with). You can really hear his talent on the slower, more ballad-like songs, but unfortunately those aren't particularly great either.
 

Night Prowler

Customer Deathcycle Manager
Staff member
It's better than the previous album, but still relatively forgettable.

Wish Barlow would do something with Arjen Lucassen. Arjen did a lot of songs with vocalists who double-track their vocals the same way Barlow does, except he gets them to sing normally: Ralf Scheepers, Hansi, Deris, etc. Not to mention Tommy Karevik who sings way better for Arjen than he is allowed to for Kamelot.
 

Yax

Ancient Mariner
Yeah, I'm buying the new Ashes of Ares album. Not that it's awesome. It's okay, but I want to support Barlow to keep putting new music out. Maybe some day they will bring in an additional song writer and land more than 3 good tunes and the rest average tunes per album.

I'd actually be far more interested in having a full album of Barlow doing either acoustic Iced Earth covers, or something in the line of Chris Cornell's Higher Truth album. AoA is sadly, rather stock.

... On the other hand, we've so far gotten one album worth of good material if you cherry pick from the three albums. So, one pretty good Ashes of Ares playlist, I guess?
 

Night Prowler

Customer Deathcycle Manager
Staff member
I miss vintage Barlow Iced Earth.


Have you heard him in Seventh Wonder? His albums with them really show how much he underperforms in Kamelot.

I loved him on The Source, too.
He sounds great for Seventh Wonder, but their music doesn't do much for me. That being said, I didn't notice that they released an album since he left for Kamelot, might check that one out.
 

Detective Beauregard

Independent as a hog on ice
He sounds great for Seventh Wonder, but their music doesn't do much for me. That being said, I didn't notice that they released an album since he left for Kamelot, might check that one out.
They’re definitely pretty proggy and wanky if you’re not used to that sound (and occasionally it’s even a bit much for me). Sometimes I think they just try to do too much with the music that it ends up sounding cluttered. But some of their melodies are outstanding. Tiara (their newest) is a solid album, and from memory a bit less wanky than their previous two.

I think their album Waiting in the Wings is a bit more straightforward than the others, if you haven’t heard it. One of my favorites.

They have a monster bass player, so that is a big part of why I like them.
 

MrKnickerbocker

clap hands
Not to mention Tommy Karevik who sings way better for Arjen than he is allowed to for Kamelot.
Sad part is that his average vocals are self-inflicted. He has stated that he specifically tries to write easier, less-demanding vocals for Kamelot because of how frequently they tour.

He knows he'll never really have to reproduce the Arjen stuff live and only performs with Seventh Wonder like 10 shows every 10 years, so he can utilize his full capabilities without worrying about vocal burnout.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
Huh. Surprised Schaffer is getting another release so soon after that shit show. It looks like it’ll be a decent Stu-era performance, but it doesn’t seem very special otherwise.

“…the acclaimed Plagues of Babylon…”
[citation needed]
 

Jer

The dotage of a dotard
Huh. Surprised Schaffer is getting another release so soon after that shit show.
I tried to look up more info on this Ravencraft Productions to see if they’re just fulfilling the remainder of a record deal with Schaffer or something, but I can’t find any info on the business at all (just a different video editing business with the same name in Oregon), and it appears that all they’ve ever released are Demons & Wizards re-releases and recent Iced Earth, Schaffer/Barlow Project, and Witherfall albums, and only since 2019. Really weird.

Witherfall supposedly has a worldwide deal with Century Media, so I’m not sure how Ravencraft fits into the picture. Maybe Schaffer presses his own CDs in his garage under that name…LOL.
 

Helphyre

Trooper
In happier news, it's good to see Stu back in Into Eternity. Everyone I know who went to Hyperspace Festival had nothing but good things to say about him and the band.
 

Yax

Ancient Mariner
Meanwhile he's posting new hot sauce and "awesome" live albums on Facebook for sale every other day trying to pay his legal fees.
Hate to admit it, the album is pretty good, judging by the "Dark Saga" track. Probably their worst ever artwork though.
 

Jer

The dotage of a dotard
Schaffer only made a cameo in his new video, and I didn’t hear much music, but it sure is getting a wide audience!
 
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