During a July 12 Facebook Live chat, ICED EARTH leader Jon Schaffer revealed that plans are afoot to release a 30th-anniversary edition of the band's self-titled debut album. The new version of the 1990 LP will feature a remix by Chris "Zeuss" Harris, who previously worked with ICED EARTH on the group's latest effort, 2017's "Incorruptible", and brand new artwork.
As for the possibility of a follow-up to "Incorruptible", Schaffer said (see video below): "There is no new ICED EARTH music happening right now. There is no way we can plan. You guys should be able to understand that, if you watch the news. I have an international band, and I can't even travel to Europe right now [because of coronavirus pandemic-related restrictions]. There's no point in trying to put together a plan, because I guarantee you they're gonna launch the second wave of this shit and lock us all down again. To what degree, nobody really knows yet, but they were fielding that as soon as all this nonsense started, so it's definitely expected to be the case. So making plans for touring and putting all that together just to have it all derailed is costly and naïve at best. So I don't know.
"I'm gonna definitely plan on working on some new material later this year, early next year," he explained. "But again, that depends on how things roll out. So that's the way it is. We're just gonna have to see what happens with the global situation. There are several things that could take place. Hopefully some good things will happen to turn this mess around, but I'm not feeling super confident about that at the moment."
Schaffer recently announced the release of his first book, "Wicked Words And Epic Tales". The book is the debut release from Schaffer's new publishing company Wicked Words, LLC and is the first of many original concepts planned for future release by Schaffer.
"Wicked Words And Epic Tales" is a collection of lyrics, interviews and pages of artwork that Schaffer's work has inspired throughout the years. The book is an anthology of lyrics from Schaffer that span his 35 years in making music in various projects, including ICED EARTH, DEMONS & WIZARDS, SONS OF LIBERTY and PURGATORY.
Less than two years ago, Schaffer teamed up with his old pals in PURGATORY, the band that he originally founded in 1985, then later became ICED EARTH, to record five tracks that were written between 1985 and 1987. The resulting "Purgatory" EP was released in December 2018 through Century Media. The EP includes liner notes and comments by Schaffer, Gene Adam, Greg Seymour and Bill Owen, and fitting cover artwork by David Newman Stump and Roy Young, known from their excellent work on "Incorruptible".