Iced Earth play American power metal, somewhat reminiscent of 80's bands such as Iron Maiden, with a touch of early Metallica. Schaffer is the main man here as the remaining lineup has fluctuated fairly consistently. Some accuse them of rehashing riffs as many of the riffs sound similar to each other, but the riffs are great, so I can't complain much. Also of note is the vocalist Barlow has a great mid-range clean voice that is second only to Warrel Dane, IMO. He truly makes this otherwise good band great.
The recording of "The Glorious Burden" was held up when Barlow decided to retire from the music industry altogether. Ripper Owens of Judas Priest came in as a session vocalist and eventually became a full-time band member when Halford rejoined Priest.
Shortly before the 2004 tour, drummer Richard Christy left the band to pursue an opportunity to join Howard Stern's crew. After early shows touring the Framing Armageddon album, Shaffer announced that Barlow was rejoining Iced Earth at the cost of Owens.