Heavy/Power Metal >> Matt Barlow retiring from Iced Earth
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Thursday 03 March 2011 - 02:14:40
Long-time vocalist Matt Barlow has retired from Iced Earth.

In his heartfelt statement, Barlow cites his commitment to his family and
the need for Iced Earth to tour more as the reasons for his retirement;
however, he has committed to perform with Iced Earth on all 2011
European festival dates, which will be his last with the band.

Matt Barlow’s official statement is as follows:

“Brothers and Sisters,

“Let me begin by saying how much of an honor it has been to share my time in Iced Earth with Jon and the guys…and with all of you! Since my return
to the band in 2007, it has truly been extraordinary. I have had the
opportunity to travel the world and see old friends and meet new ones.
Though we had originally thought that the Iced Earth touring schedule
would be very limited, we were able to play our fair share of concerts.

“During that time we were also able to have a live DVD produced [the
forthcoming Festivals of the Wicked]. However, due to the rapidly
changing music industry, it has become increasingly clear to recording
artists that the only way to keep a band viable and to truly reach its
potential is through live performances. That Means that a band must
reach out to new regions of the globe and become pioneers for their own
livelihood. Since 2007, Jon and I have always had the best intentions
for the future of Iced Earth, and we still do. However, given the band’s
projected touring schedule, Iced Earth’s future and mine must now take
separate paths.

“On my departure from Iced Earth in 2003, I made a
commitment to my wife and to the idea that we would start, and raise,
our family together. Two years later, my first child was Born and two
years after that, my second. My youngest son was Born about a week
before Jon asked me to return to Iced Earth. It was a very exciting and
emotional time for all of us, but we were all clear on our intentions.
It is apparent to us now that regardless of our belief at that time,
time can change an intended outcome. In this instance, I hope that
change will not be regarded as a bad thing, but rather as a necessary
part of evolution.

“Jon and the band must venture into new realms
to continue to grow Iced Earth. I commend him for his ideals and Wish
Nothing but to share in his vision. I know that this is not the last
time Jon and I will work together, but it will be my last endeavor with
Iced Earth. Iced Earth is a name and force of its own. It has been very
good to me and has allowed me to live a dream that others would give
most anything for. I have been truly Blessed to share this experience
with everyone. I will continue to support Jon and Iced Earth in every
way. I will also continue to create and perform in my own capacity.

“These next months will prove to be a very emotional time for me. I am
extremely happy to be able to share the experience with Jon, Brent,
Freddie, Troy and the Iced Earth family. I am proud to know them and
honored that they consider me their friend. It is going to be phenomenal
to share the love of this music during several summer festivals and I
know that it will be a time we will never forget.

“Please consider all that I have brought forth and all of Jon’s offerings before
passing judgment on the future of Iced Earth. This band has always
strived to give its listeners the very best and I know that Jon, as
always, will continue to lead that charge.

“To Iced Earth and all of you…I wish you the very best!!!

- Matt”

Band founder and leader Jon Schaffer reacted to his friend’s decision with
equal parts sadness and praise.

“I knew Matt wrestled with this for a long, long time,” said Schaffer. “It
wasn’t an easy decision for him. But I love him dearly and I can’t
fault his reasons.”

Schaffer continued: “Matt is one of the most
sincere people I know, and one of the most talented. His departure
deeply saddens me, but I hope all fans of Iced Earth will cut him some
slack. I wish Matt well, respect him greatly, and I ask everyone else to
do the same.”

With a new album in the works, and a world tour pending, Schaffer has already begun the search for a new vocalist.

“I have a few guys in mind,” said Schaffer. “And as you can imagine, it is
a very important decision. One thing is for certain: we are not looking
for a Matt Barlow ‘clone’ – we are looking for a front man that brings
power and character of his own to the table. There’s only one Matt, and
that era of the band’s history will always hold a special place in my

The band’s long-awaited 6-hour, three-concert live DVD Festivals of the Wicked is scheduled for release this spring.

The band recently announced a new summer festival date: Dong Open Air in Neukirchen-Vluyn, Germany, on July 15th.

With the Dong Open Air date confirmed, Iced Earth will play a total of six
summer festivals, including: Wacken, Graspop, Rock am Härtsfeldsee,
Ilosaarirock Festival in Joensuu, Finland on July 16th, and the Sweden
Rock Festival on June 10th in Sölvesborg, Sweden.

More festival dates will be announced soon on the band’s official web site, MySpace, and Facebook pages.

Announcement of a new vocalist will be made through all social media outlets as soon as a decision is made.

Well, who do you think should be new new vocalist? or do you think Jon Schaffer should put Iced Earth to bed?

Tim Owens to come back? (I doubt it very much)

Maybe Jorn ?

Thursday 03 March 2011 - 02:30:32
honestly, i reallly liked their albums with Tim Owens alot. not saying that Barlow sucks, but i think Tim Owens' Voice fits in a little better with Iced Earth's overall sound

Thursday 03 March 2011 - 02:51:41
What Demo said. Tim Owens Voice is way better for Iced Earth.

Also, Pyramaze had an album with Matt Barlow doing vocals. Oddly, it was very good.

Thursday 03 March 2011 - 10:46:37
What a weepy speech

Wednesday 16 March 2011 - 15:13:11
The new singer has been announced.

It's Stu Block from Into Eternity.

Wednesday 16 March 2011 - 15:48:01

citation :
MothandMoon says : The new singer has been announced.

It's Stu Block from Into Eternity.

Ohhhhhh, I know this guy! I bought an Into Eternity album once... and sold it to a second hand store a month later.
I will say that everyone from I.E. is ridiculously talented, including the vocalist, but their music isn't well-written. I think it's good Stu is getting into Iced Earth, a band that writes great music. Better way to showcase his awesome vocal range. Just hope he doesn't start writing the lyrics.

Wednesday 16 March 2011 - 16:18:23

citation :
InfinityZero says : Just hope he doesn't start writing the lyrics.

Jon Schaffer is a control freak. He never allows anyone else touch the lyrics.

Wednesday 16 March 2011 - 17:53:38
I don't know the guy but he's got 'the look' in that photo... 0

Friday 18 March 2011 - 15:36:01
i think Stu Block would be a great replacement for Barlow, his Voice is sorta Power metal-ish. i just hope Into Eternity keeps makin new albums too

Friday 17 June 2011 - 18:03:54
I did not like having Ripper Owens singing for Iced Earth.Although he is great singer in his own right..I felt Iced Earth was not the right fitting for his style.Come to think of it ,I really did not care for him replacing Halford either..I think that Jugulator was not even in the top 10 of Priest albums.
 Anyway,Iced Earth with Barlow will always be great. I hope this new vocalist Stu..never heard of him  has at least a better sound than Ripper gave to Iced Earth. We shall see.