ICED EARTH Guitarist Jon Schaffer On Vocalist Stu Block - "Always Ready To Go And Giving 100% All The Time"

Hot Flashes

Posted on Saturday, June 29, 2013 at 06:10:10 EST

Kostas Polyzos at recently caught up with ICED EARTH guitarist/founder Jon Schaffer. An excerpt from the interview is availabel below:

KP: I had the chance to talk with Stu (Block/vocals) before your last live appearances in Athens. He seemed to be a really nice and down to earth guy. How is working with him and what is the element you think he has bring to Iced Earth?

Schaffer: "It's great working with Stu. He's a lot of fun to hang out with, he is always very positive, hard worker, always ready to go and giving 100% all the time. He brings a lot of cool things in the table. He brings the ability for me to have a writing partner who can attribute with some very cool vocal melodies. I guess the most important thing is our friendship. The chemistry from an artistic stand point of view is obviously very important, but when this caring over to a more personal thing and being friends and having this chemistry in a personal level...that is that makes it more special. We have a great time, Stu makes me laugh. We hit it up great and he fits with Iced Earth great. I'm very glad we found him."

KP: And what do you think are the main differences between him and Matt (Barlow) and Tim (Owens)?

Schaffer: "All these three guys are very different personalities, with their own strengths and weaknesses. You can't really compare. I guess the thing with Stu is that he can do so much different things with his voice... And the other guys can as well, don't get me wrong... Matt and Tim can make great things with their voices. What I mean is that Stu can go from that death metal kind of shit to the Rob Halford kind of highs and everything in between and it's very cool. He is developing his middle range and that's the area of his voice I've being really working on and pushing him in the songwriting process. That's kind the part of his voice that he never worked with and nobody pushed him to use before the Dystopia album and he is really excited about it too, because he is discovering all the things that he can do and he is just getting better all the time."

Click here for the complete interview.

Schaffer issued the following status report back in May:

"There’s a lot happening in Iced Earth world at the moment. We are just a few short weeks away from getting together in Germany to rehearse the new songs for the upcoming album, Plagues Of Babylon."

"We have a few weeks of rehearsal, then we start tracking the new album in between a string of festivals in Europe, and one in India, which we are all excited about, since it’ll be our first time there. Tracking will be done at a studio in Germany to try to keep the jetlag at a minimum. The numerous trips across the Atlantic during the Dystopia recording were a bit brutal, so we are doing it smarter this time. If we stay on target, you will have the new album in October! It’s a tight schedule, but we are intent on making it happen. I am very happy with the work so far, and it’s only going to get better when we are all together cranking it out."