While it was previously reported that ex-JUDAS PREIST screamer, Tim “The Ripper” Owens, had joined ICED EARTH, the band have clarified that that has not yet officially been determined. Although, Owens did record the vocals for the band’s upcoming album, The Glorious Burden, he was originally recruited as a guest contributor. In an interview with Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles, ICED EARTH’s Jon Schaffer clarified Owens’s status:
“Tim was hired to do the vocals for the record only. Two days after we finished, he lost his gig with PRIEST. Obviously this changes things and maybe he will be the new guy someday in the future, but right now he needs some time to figure out what he’s going to do.
“There will come a time when I will decide to look for a permanent singer in the near future, if Tim can’t commit. I hired Tim to do this record knowing that he had the ability to do the parts that I’d written and that was the extent of it. I would love to have Tim as the new frontman in ICED EARTH, but he’s got to want it or it’s no good for anyone involved. He’s going through a big change in his life and I will give him some time to figure out what he wants for his future career, but obviously we can’t wait forever.
“Either way, ICED EARTH will carry on in the same tradition as always. I feel great and am very, very optimistic for the band’s future, no matter who ends up in the vocal position. I will find the right guy and maybe it is Tim. Time will tell. This record has brought about a new beginning for the band and fate will take its course!”