Iced Earth Singer Stu Block, Bassist Luke Appleton + Guitarist Jake Dreyer Have Quit the Band
Iced Earth singer Stu Block and bassist Luke Appleton have officially announced that they have both quit the band. The decision comes over one month after the metal group's founding member, guitarist Jon Schaffer, participated in the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6 and just under four weeks after the FBI confirmed he had been arrested on six federal charges.
Block, who came under fire earlier for a since-deleted social media post where he alleged he confused the meanings of the words "condemn" and "condone" in regards to his message that had the appearance of supporting the attack as it took place, said his latest decision was made after careful deliberation.
The singer stated he informed Schaffer and his current management of his immediate resignation, which came after reassessing the situation while contemplating his trajectory as an artist, as well as out of respect for others in the band's camp that were still processing the reality of the events that had transpired.
"Time to embark on a new chapter, he wrote, closing the book on his decade-long role as Iced Earth's singer who sang on the Dystopia, Plagues of Babylon and Incorruptible albums.
Block's complete statement reads as follows:
Well, there are times and events when you have to take stock and re evaluate your life, work, and trajectory for the future. That being said I have informed Jon and his current management that I must announce my resignation from Iced Earth with immediate effect.
Before I made any personal decision I needed the last few weeks to process the situation as well as respect others in our camp processing the situation. I thank you all very much for respecting this. It’s the best decision in many ways for my personal/ professional growth going forward. Time to move on, heal and prosper.
Much love and respect to you all. Don’t fret! Stay tuned for some exciting things to come! Time to embark upon a new chapter. Be good to each other.
Stu Block ✌️❤️
Appleton, who joined the band in 2012 and played on Plagues of Babylon and Incorruptible, also issued a statement announcing he had stepped down as Iced Earth's bassist.
The statement reads,
In response to recent events & circumstances, I have notified Iced Earth’s management and Jon that I will be resigning as the Iced Earth bassist with immediate effect.
I would like to thank everyone who has sent me their support and love during this difficult time. Thank you!!!
Update: A third Iced Earth member, guitarist Jake Dreyer, has distanced himself from the group as well. Dreyer told TMZ that while his Instagram profile still lists him as a member of the group, he's now solely focused on playing with Witherfall. The guitarist says that while he enjoyed his time with Iced Earth, "it's unfortunate how this tragedy unfolded."
In response to Schaffer's involvement in the Capitol riot, where he was photographed inside the government building while wielding a can of bear spray, his bands Iced Earth and Demons & Wizards have both been removed from record label Century Media's active roster page. Blind Guardian singer Hansi Kursch, who also fronted Demons & Wizards, announced his resignation from the collaborative project with Schaffer on Feb. 1.
Schaffer turned himself into authorities on Jan. 17 after appearing on the FBI's "Most Wanted" list one week earlier. He is expected to be extradited to Washington D.C. to handle further legal obligations in relation to his criminal charges.
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