Icarus Witch is a pure heavy metal band from Pittsburgh, which was formed by Sin. The band quickly recorded Falling Off The Edge Of The World upon formation in 2004 and also participated in the A True Metal tribute To Black Sabbath album. Icarus Witch featured former (and future MSOD) guitarist Greg Gruben and drummer Keith Hurka at this point. The drummer would later band with Gruben in a new incarnation of MSOD. The band recorded several songs while recording for the An All Star Salute to Alice Cooper with guest guitarist Michael Romeo of Symphony X. The songs ended up being the band's late 2004 EP Roses On White Lace.
The band's debut full-length appeared in the autumn of 2005. Featuring new drummer Pasarelli, the disc also featured guitarist George h guesting on a cover of S.A.T.O. The band played a string of East Coast shows in the USA. The gang recruited second guitarist Quinn Lukas in the spring of 2006. Pasarelli soon left the fold as did touring drummer Jere Jameson. The band’s van was broken into and robbed while on the road in August of 23007. The band lost several pieces of expensive equipment. The group’s Songs For The Lost CD was out in September through Cleopatra Records. Icarus Witch was on the road alongside former Iron Maiden vocalist Paul Di’Anno in early 2010. Not only was Icarus Witch the direct support for the full tour, the band was also acting as Di'Anno's backing band, taking on double-duty every night of the tour. Icarus Witch had also completed its third full-length album, entitled Draw Down The Moon, which was to be released February 9th through Cleopatra Records/Koch Distribution. Icarus Witch made second guitarist Ed Skero a permanent member after his touring stint with the band opening for Paul Di’Anno. Due to professional differences Icarus Witch parted ways with vocalist Matthew Bizilia in the spring of 2010 and replaced him with Christopher Shaner. The group had recently acted as singer Paul Di’Anno’s backing band. The band was opening for Y&T in the summer of 2010. Paul Di’Anno would play Iron Maiden’s self-titled debut album in its entirety plus select songs from the second album, Killers, during his tour of the USA in December and January of 2010 and 2011. Support on the tour would come from Icarus Witch. Even more line-up changes came in mid-2011. Icarus Witch underwent more personnel changes. It lost guitarist Ed Skero and drummer Steve Johnson and replaced them with Dave Watson (Mantic Ritual) and Tom Wierzbicky (Hessler) respectively. Icarus Witch’s Rise album was out July 2012 through Cleopatra Records.
ICARUS WITCH - ROSES ON WHITE LACE - MAGICK
Icarus Witch is a spellbinding US newcomer act playing undeniably excellent heavy metal. Thus far heard on a couple of covers albums, this Pittsburgh band takes Iced Earth's riffing style, early Sanctuary melodies, fluid US metal vocals and versed solos a la Iron Maiden or Queensrÿche and conjures something mesmerizing for every true heavy metal fan. This band is adept beyond its years which is probably a function of its experienced members. Beyond the musicians' resume though Icarus Witch has the knack and dexterity to compose some seriously good metal that is both endearing to revelers in nostalgia and seekers of new energy in the scene.
Roses On White Lace is an EP bearing cover artwork similar to Savatage's The Dungeons Are Calling featuring three proper songs and a cover version. The band follows Jacobs Dream and Cage as a band that will be heralded as having the potential to resurrect US metal to worldwide prominence. It would be interesting to see whether this witch can come up with a full-length's worth of material this good. - Ali "The Metallian"
ICARUS WITCH - CAPTURE THE MAGIC - MAGICK
Obviously the level of expectation for Icarus Witch's debut album was high since the release last year of the band's EP, Roses On White Lace. The band has met those expectations - with a few reservations.
Icarus Witch is a new band that hearkens back to the true and Classic sound of heavy metal, and is thus strongly recommended for fans of Iced Earth, Fates Warning, old Savatage, Queensrÿche, Griffin (US) and Nevermore, without sounding like a copycat or merely nostalgic. That is a huge compliment. Capture The Magic is pure molten metal (and aside from a possible pun aimed at the band's record company) and a fitting title for the band's musical adventure. The vocals of Matthew Bizilia are strong and consistent hitting slightly higher notes than average, but never becoming shrilly. The man has character and stamina. The riffs are strong and the guitars of Steve 'swift fingers' Pollick always on. The Classical solos and gritty rhythms, coupled with the rhythm section clear the band of the hurdle of the commonplace. The production is also full and convincing.
Icarus Witch would enchant the listener more though were it to let loose once in a while and went for the throat. The band's slow to mid-paced speed and lack of shredding works against it. The band would not necessarily have to sacrifice its sense of melody with the inclusion of a couple of rippers. This is especially disappointing because Pollick is obviously up to the task. The appearance of George Lynch on the album is a nice touch, but covers are a dime a dozen and only detract from the band's own material.
Nonetheless, Icarus Witch is metal to the bone and a band one would love to catch live on stage. Were the band to keep up the momentum and the style, break out of its shell and speed things up some the next album would be a definitive statement. - Ali "The Metallian"