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As an early demo, this is excellent. Unlike what many people think, Gene Adam has a good voice, unless he's trying to sing high (when he sounds like a castrated leprechaun that inhaled helium). Even then, Rob Halford sounds pretty much the same...almost comedic, really...but I digress...
Jack has some great riffs, and Steve Harris-level bass in the mix (which is cool...good basslines). And the music fit their Alice Cooper - meets - Iron Maiden style shows. Eerie, heavy, and still sounds good. In Jason's Mind is a bit more awkward, but is still good mid-tempo metal. All in all, this is a damn good find, and hopefully Jon will compile all the old demo songs for a rerelease (and no rerecording like those Days Of Purgatory debacles...).
Wow. That's the word to describe this demo: Wow. Psychotic Waltz is a demo released by the band Purgatory prior to becoming Iced Earth. Prior, too, to becoming GOOD, as they were definitely not the thrash/power metal band we know and love today. There are two songs on this demo: "Jack" and "In Jason's Mind", combining for a grand total of nine minutes. Geez. "Jack" starts of with a weird little intro, before the drums take us into what sounds a little bit like the riff from "Colors", only shittier. When the song picks up, we begin to notice that the bass was placed very high in the mix, and is rather overpowering to everything else but the the drums. Gene's vocals are, of course, atrocious, but at least on Iced Earth's debut album e gets a bit better. Here, though, he sounds like he's being strangled to death.One MORE thing: "Jack" has no solo. Yep, that's right. No solo. Well, this sucks. Next track: "In Jason's Mind". This is exactly the same song as "Jason" on the Burning Oasis demo, just with a different name. This song is a little over five minutes, has a solo, and is much better than the other song.
Final note: this demo is not very good. The vocals are crap, and the riffs are boring and uninspired. And good luck trying to find a copy, because only about 1000 copies exist in the world. It's just as well. This is for the die-hard Iced Earth fan only.
I was lucky enough to come across as 3rd generation demo of this and when I heard it I was very surprised at it. To be honest this dosn't really sound much like Iced Earth, the gallops are significantly toned down, the bass is very high in the mix (almost Steve Harris like) and the vocals sound slightly more like Rob Halford in places.
Two two songs on here are incredibly well writen, and actually quite dark. The pounding bass drum breaks in the song Jack adds an almost psychotic sound, and the guitar leads are very creepy sounding. The riff in Jack has one hell of a catchy groove too, I'm quite shocked this song didn't get took onto another level and put onto the Enter The Realm demo. It's much more of a rhythm based song as opposed to the melody centered songs Iced Earth are usually associated with. One thing it has in common with the Iced Earth we all know today is that the lead guitar work is hardly anything to marvel at.
The second song In Jasons Mind starts out with a very creepy intro. It seems even in his early days, Jon Schaffer always wanted to create "darker" music, and he pulls it off really well on here.
The main thing that lets this down is the vocals. I've never been a fan of Gene, and while he does sound alot better than on the Enter The Realm demo, he still has nothing on their 2 later singers. The guitar leads could have been better too, but they do create a very cool atmosphere. Most surprisingly the bass work is probably what I consider to be best about the 2 songs, it's very punchy and carries the rhythm well.
Overall this isn't the sort of thing you'd go looking around for and paying lots of money for unless you were a collector, however if you're a casual Iced Earth fan I'd recommend tracking the mp3s of this down.
Well, these guys would sure as fuck get better. This contains one okay song and one really fucking worthless song. The worthless: Jack. That one just goes nowhere and does nothing. Riffing is uninspired, sounding like a sixth-rate Maiden ripoff combined with a bit of Jag Panzer influence. The song just doesn't go anywhere, that's the worst part.
Then, In Jason's Mind starts off more promising (well, after the intro Gary Numan "Cars" ripoff riff!), and continues to be pretty decent except for a few sections. Better riffs, more exciting and generally with a better sense of focus.
I didn't mention the production... it's shit, but hey, it's an N-th generation copy of a demo. Guitars too soft, bass too loud, oh well. Oh and the vocalist is crap, but hey he'd get kicked out after one album.
Well, if you're reading this review you undoubtedly know that this band later became Iced Earth, and this demo certainly shows signs of the greatness which was to come. The two songs display Schaffer's trademark riffing style, although the arrangements are slightly less complicated than those on the first few Iced Earth albums. The lyrics deal with monsters, one classic, the other more contemporary, and unfortunately they are barely intelligible due to Gene Adam's atrocious singing. If you don't like the vocals on Iced Earth's debut, you'll despise these. Other than the vocals, the quality of this recording is quite good, and demonstrates how Schaffer has always been a perfectionist, even when working with a limited budget. All in all, this is definitely a cool item to search out. Now if I could just get my hands on an official copy....