In typical balls-to-the-wall Iced Earth fashion, the legendary Metal band has re-recorded the entire 17-minute fan-favorite epic 'Dante's Inferno' and are giving it away free on their official website.
"If there's one song fans have asked us to play live more than any other it's 'Dante's Inferno,'" Iced Earth main man Jon Schaffer said. "The simple reason why we haven't is because the original click track was erased, therefore requiring a keyboard player to do the parts live. That's OK for a special event like when we recorded 'Alive In Athens', but to hire a keyboard player for a full tour, for one song, just isn't financially feasible."
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This summer, during the recording of 'Dystopia', Iced Earth's soon-to-be-released 10th studio album, the band entered the studio for the express purpose of remedying that situation – and emerged with a powerful rendition that's (if possible) even more monumental than the original, which was the closing track on the band's 1995 album 'Burnt Offerings'.
Schaffer and new vocalist Stu Block talk about the recording of 'Dante's Inferno' in this exclusive video clip just posted.
'Dante's Inferno' (which is based on 'Inferno', the first part of Dante's poem 'The Divine Comedy') hasn't been played live since 1999's groundbreaking 'Alive In Athens' album.
"We wanted to say 'Thank You' to all of our loyal fans who have waited so long to hear us play 'Dante' again," said Jon. "So, we decided to give this to them, free. It's because of our fans we've been able to make music all these years. This is a way to show how much we appreciate them."
Schaffer promises 'Dante's Inferno' will be back in the band's set lists for all upcoming shows on the 2011-2012 World Dystopia Tour.
'Dystopia' is scheduled for release in Europe on October 17th, and in the U.S. on October 18th, both via Century Media. Two bonus tracks have also been recorded for inclusion on special editions of the album.
The release of Dystopia will be followed by the most extensive world tour Iced Earth has ever undertaken.
The English leg of the 2011-2012 World Dystopia Tour has had one change made to it since we first published it. The band have now moved their London show on November 4th from Shepherd's Bush Empire to the Islington O2 Academy.
Sun, 2011-10-30 Bochum Zeche
Tue, 2011-11-01 Amsterdam Melkweg
Wed, 2011-11-02 Uden De Pul
Thu, 2011-11-03 Antwerp Trix
Fri, 2011-11-04 London O2 Islington Academy
Sat, 2011-11-05 Birmingham O2 Academy
Sun, 2011-11-06 Bristol O2 Academy
Tue, 2011-11-08 Paris Alhambra
Wed, 2011-11-09 Lyon Transbordeur
Thu, 2011-11-10 Barcelona Salamandra 1
Fri, 2011-11-11 Madrid Sala Heineken
Sat, 2011-11-12 Bilbao Rock Star Live
Mon, 2011-11-14 Milano Alcatraz
Tue, 2011-11-15 Rome Alpheus
Fri, 2011-11-18 Athens Gagarin 205
Sat, 2011-11-19 Athens Gagarin 205
Sun, 2011-11-20 Thessaloniki Principal Club
Mon, 2011-11-21 Sofia Yubileina Hall
Tue, 2011-11-22 Bucarest The Silver Church
Wed, 2011-11-23 Belgrade SKC
Thu, 2011-11-24 Budapest Club 202
Fri, 2011-11-25 Bratislava Majestic Music Club
Sat, 2011-11-26 Warsaw Stodola
Sun, 2011-11-27 Vilnius Forum Palace
Tue, 2011-11-29 Moscow Tochka Club
Thu, 2011-12-01 Helsinki Nosturi
Sat, 2011-12-03 Copenhagen The Rock
Sun, 2011-12-04 Hamburg Markthalle
Tue, 2011-12-06 Herford X
Wed, 2011-12-07 Köln Essigfabrik
Thu, 2011-12-08 München Backstage Werk
Fri, 2011-12-09 Geiselwind Christmas Metal Festival
Sat, 2011-12-10 Pratteln Z7
Sun, 2011-12-11 Ludwigsburg Rockfabrik
Tue, 2011-12-13 Istanbul Refresh - The Venue