REGINA — Regina metal band Into Eternity is hoping the recent hiring of a singer and dramatic shift in testosterone will give the band new life after nearly a year of uncertainty.
Amanda Kiernan of Edmonton’s Order of Chaos takes over from Stu Block who was hired away last year by American metal band Iced Earth, leaving Into Eternity without a full-time singer.
Band founder and guitarist Tim Roth began searching for a replacement last fall after deciding to record a new album with hopes of taking the band on the road in 2012. After offers for shows began coming in, Roth didn’t take long to invite Kiernan to Regina after hearing a tape of her performing his songs.
“I had all these guys who told me they could do the songs and hit the notes Stu could. So I had them try out and it was like, ‘No way.’ Nobody could do it,” Roth said. “But Amanda’s got this great voice … none of the dudes could hit the notes Stu could, so maybe it makes sense that only a chick can do it.
“Besides, she already fits in like she’s one of the guys.”
Roth said Kiernan will add a visual element the shows.
“She’s a woman and she has these great outfits.”
Kiernan, who said she’s been an Into Eternity fan since she was in high school, admitted she was nervous when she arrived in Regina for rehearsals with the full band earlier this month.
“At first, I was pretty intimidated. These guys are rock stars to me,” she said. “There were times when I was sitting around with the guys, and then all of a sudden I’d get this little burst of energy because I reminded myself that I was sitting with Into Eternity.”
After agreeing to sign-up with Into Eternity, Kiernan had to break the news to her bandmates in Order of Chaos, some of whom didn’t take her news well.
“I couldn’t pass up on the Into Eternity thing because I could never sit at home and wonder what could have been,” Kiernan said, adding she hopes she can perform with her old band whenever she’s not working with Into Eternity.
“Some of them might not understand, but I think that in the long run, this will be very good for Order of Chaos. They’re a little jealous and upset. But I think I just need to prove to them that I’ll work 100 per cent at both bands,” said Kiernan.
Block, who toured across Europe with Iced Earth last fall and is to tour again this winter across Canada and the U.S., went out of his way to help Kiernan sing the often complex Into Eternity numbers when he was Regina on a break earlier this month.
“I don’t want to hold Into Eternity back. They need to be taking advantage of the opportunities that they have,” Block said.
“All the boys in the band, even previous guys who’ve been in the band, are like brothers to me. They were so supportive to me when I got into Iced Earth. I feel I need to do all I can to help them keep going,” Block said.
“Any time I can help, I will.”
Block said Kiernan has a challenge ahead of her but is confident Into Eternity fans will be pleased with its new sound.
“She has an awesome spirit. She has a little growing to do but she’s got a great stage presence. And all the guys are going to love her.”
Kiernan’s first show is slated for Feb. 25 at Manitoba Metalfest in Winnipeg.