Power of Metal.dk Review

Iced Earth
Plagues of Babylon
Style: U.S. Powermetal
Release date: 6 January, 2014
Playing time: 63:13

After the departure of Matt Barlow they found Stu Block to fill in his place. At first I had my doubts if he would be the right man, not because of his capacities, but more whether his vocals would fit the music of Iced Earth or not. On "Dystopia" he immediately proved me wrong, his variety in singing and his powerful voice fit like a glove. On this new album he sounds even better probably due to his experience with the band and having more influence in the writing process.

'Plagues of Babylon' is a typical Iced Earth album and will be liked by all the fans that liked their previous work. The first part of the album is based on a concept that continues on the story of  the 'Something Wicked' album. The music is like we know it, typical U.S. Powermetal based on early Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and Savatage, but with a very big Iced Earth sauce. Fast songs, hymns, semi acoustic parts, strong riffs, passionate singing, big refrains, twin soli and so on. With "I Could See You" the second part of the album starts, it is a very emotional song with Stu shining. The second part is a little less heavy and has some tracks not typically for Iced Earth. A song like "Peacemaker" for example even sounds a bit southern. On several songs guest singer Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian) does his parts and on "Highwayman" Michael Poulsen (Volbeat) and Russell Allen (Symphony X) sing a-long.

All in all a good album that fits perfectly in their anthology and on which the band shows that they are still as strong as ever. 

01. Plagues of Babylon
02. Democide
03. The Culling
04. Among the Living Dead
05. Resistance
06. The End
07. If I Could See You
08. Cthulhu
09. Peacemaker
10. Parasite
11. Spirit of the Times
12. Highwayman
13. Outro
Label: Century Media
Distribution: Universal (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Reinier de Vries
Date: 15 January, 2014
Website: www.icedearth.com