Iced Earth has been on the metal scene for 27 years now. They have been through some lineup changes as well as management changes but they still seem to hammer forward with a top-notch metal sound. With 11 albums under their belt its latest release is Incorruptible. This album proves Iced Earth is not going to soften up anytime soon. It is hard, fast and in your face. It is everything you expect from an Iced Earth album.
The opening track on the album is “Great Heathen Army.” It starts out with a Viking like chant, and then blasts into an aggressive song about Vikings seeking revenge and conquering the Anglo-Saxons. Track two “Black Flag” continues the spirit of conquering but shifts gears to the pirates of the open sea. This song is assertive, melodic and one that is going to be amazing to see live. The song’s lyrics speak of “barrels of rum, black powder, and the clash of the blade.” My favorite part of this song is Stu’s vocals. He makes his voice very pirate like and gives a “Rrrrrrr.” The album continues with “Raven Wing.” This song has a very Native American feel to it. The drums along with the lyrics give it a very spiritual vibe. One of my favorite tracks on the album is “The Veil.” This song is a very dark ballad with powerful lyrics and guitar. The song also has a similar sound and lyric composition to Loverboy’s “When it’s Over,” but a little slower tempo and much darker. Just when you think things are going to slow down, Iced Earth kicks it back into high gear with the epic “Seven Headed Whore.” This is a biblical song and has the sound of early Metallica. It has a great thrash sound, perfect for the subject matter of this song. The album continues with the tracks “The Relic (Part 1)” and the instrumental “Ghost Dance (Awaken the Ancestors).” They are followed up with the track “Brothers.” The album comes to an end with two more of my favorite tracks on the album. The first one is “Defiance.” This track screams Metallica influenced metal. I could not get enough of this track. I kept hitting repeat because this song is so aggressive and angry. The album closes with the historical anthem “Clear the Way (December 13th, 1862),” a song about the Irish Brigade of the Civil War, a brigade of soldiers made up of mostly Irish Immigrants. The track is almost ten minutes long and has a very Irish sound to it. You can almost hear the lyrics being sung as the brigade set off to battle:
Your Brothers surround you
Your Courage defines you”
Incorruptible is not an album for the weak of heart, or someone looking for sappy lyrics with a couple of power ballads mixed in as fillers. This is a serious metal album from start to finish with no filler in the middle. If you start at the salad bar in the buffet line you will probably not care for Incorruptible, but if you skip right to the meat you will love it. In all my years listening to Iced Earth, I would have to say that this is their best album to date and that is saying a lot because Iced Earth has had some great albums in the past 27 years. Don’t take my word for it though, skip the veggies and go right to the meat and pick up Incorruptible on June 16 via by Century Media.