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Iced Earth - Alive in Athens

1999 Century Media Records :: Reviewed by rofreason on 2005-09-04

Iced Earth pretty much epitomize power metal in the 90s. Having released album after album to a growing audience, the Florida based band has made a huge jump and relocated to the new metal capitol of the U.S., Chicago. In the interim before the next full length, we get this, an excellent live album which is by no means any filler for the masses. Over two hours in length, my only complaint about this may be that it's just so fucking LONG! But that's necessary, as most IE tracks are over the 8 minute mark, little epics all their own. And then all 16:23 of Dante's Inferno kicks in, and even Iron Maiden are awed by these usurpers of the throne. OK, I'm laying it on a bit thick, but that's my mood when I hear Iced Earth, it's meaty, powerful, metal music. Even the "ballads" are strong, putting a tear in everyone's eye (and more reminiscent of Caress of Steel era Rush than anything else to me!) and a million lighters in the air. They were smart to do this in Athens, as the crowd (yeah, I'm sure it's boosted) know every freakin' work in all the lyrics. And the band? They sound stronger than ever, with Matthew Barlow's vocals really working here, being perfect for the new material as well as his interpretations of the older stuff. The mix is Awesome, and those twin guitars work their magic everywhere. Brent Smedley also puts in a great job behind the set, and the drums sound just HUGE. Studio quality (and not to be cynical, but probably "fixed" with technology), Alive in Athens is worth it, just to hear the Iced Earth perform all their classics as they play them now with excellent clarity.

Iced Earth - Gettysburg 1863 DVD

2005 SPV :: Reviewed by skeksis on 2005-09-15

I believe this is the first DVD review for Remnants and unfortunately its a big pile of turd. As many of you are aware, main ego Jon Schaffer is fascinated with the civil war. That's all fine and dandy, and I'm one of the few who actually enjoyed (somewhat) the Glorious Burden. Hey, tracks like Greenface are killer songs, and I do think that given an album or two, Tim Owen is going to make a killer addition to the band, providing he sticks around of course. Now, here's why this DVD sucks. It comprises of the title track, which is way to fucking long as it is, and save for some cool vocal parts, is boring as can be. But, wait, there's more. Instead of filming a performance video, or anything with the band at it even in the slightest, its a animated video!!! And it isn't even that good! What the hell??? To make matter worse, there's a extremely long interview with Jon Schaffer where he talks about,...the store he owns! And than a guided tour with a guide who has the personality of stone wall! This DVD is utter crap, and I simply cannot fathom why Jon released this. I understand that some schools are using it for courses which is all and good but dammit, they really dropped the ball on this one. Hey Jon, here's a suggestion. Knock off all the egotistical nonsense and release a live DVD like you should have done in the first place! This pile of dung gets a BIG FAT ZERO.