The Triumphant Return Of IMAGIKA To The Metal World

After 10 years give or take IMAGIKA is back with a new CD for 2019! The most successful lineup of the band with guitarist Steven D. Rice (Kill Ritual, Imagika), vocalist Norman Skinner (Skinner, Niviane, Hellscream, Imagika), bassist Jim Pegram (Mudface, Angerhead, Imagika) and guest drummer Matt Thompson (King Diamond) have recorded a blistering new CD that is a modern take of where Imagika left off on their last CD “Portrait Of A Hanged Man”. The new 8 track effort entitled “Only Dark Hearts Survive” will be released by a yet to be determined label (yeah get in touch) and the CD is currently being mixed and mastered by Andy La Rocque at Sonic Train Studios. Artwork for the release has been handled by Sledgehammer Graphix/Jobert Mello. The band will also release 2 videos and plan on live appearances in throughout 2019 to support the release.

Steve: “While on the Kill Ritual tour last year (with Iced Earth and Sanctuary) we made a stop in Sacramento, CA. which is not very far from where all the past members live so Jim and Norm made it out for the show. Jim played with Kill Ritual that night on bass and Norm caught the performance. I hadn’t seen Norm in years so we drank a few (ok a lot!), bullshitted, caught up on life and had a nice reconnect. Fast forward a few months later…As I was writing the new Kill Ritual record I would have material hanging around that didn’t quite fit the KR style or direction and that with some older ideas from the past I said to myself “Wow this really has an Imagika direction to the material.” So I ran a couple ideas past Norm and he gave it his spin and before we knew it we had an album composed and ready to go. After bringing Jim, who’s been pushing for this for years in on bass along with Matt Thompson (King Diamond) who played on the last Kill Ritual release “All Men Shall Fall” to play drums it just worked and sounded great. I’m a firm believer in always moving forward and never looking back, but I’ll have to eat my words on the “never again” and just say it was meant to be! The 8 new songs are definitely Imagika in 2019 with tight riffs, concise arrangements; hook laden vocals and great grooves! I think our old and new fans will absolutely be pleasantly surprised. Can’t wait for you all to hear it!”

Norman: “Wow! It really is hard to think that it has been almost 10 years since Imagika released our last album “Portrait of a Hanged Man”. Almost a decade ago on the heels of our last tour I found myself stepping away from a group of guys that had become like brothers to me as I felt it was something I needed to do at that time. It was one of the hardest decisions I have had to make and I truly expected the band to carry on with a different vocalist fronting the band. After 7 albums and multiple tours I was surprised when the decision was later made to put Imagika to rest. We are all driven individuals and none of us wasted any time moving on to new projects. Steve formed Kill Ritual and has had much continued success with them. Jim can be heard recording and performing with Angerhead & Mudface and I’ve gone on to release many albums myself with Niviane, Skinner, and Hellscream. Since leaving the band there has remained one constant… fans have continued to ask me for more Imagika. Whether it be in interviews, over social media or in person I would be asked time and again if the band would ever regroup or record anything and for a long time my answer was “probably not”. Jim is the true architect here as he had been pushing the idea of reforming Imagika to both Steve and I separately for some time and as fate would have it Kill Ritual was touring through Sacramento with Iced Earth. This would be the 1st time the three of us would be in the same place in a very long time. Steve and I reconnected and once his tour concluded we kicked around some song ideas for fun. No pressure and just getting back to basics. Every song came together extremely quickly and before we knew it we had an album that sounded modern but very much Imagika. I am very excited especially for our fans. You asked for it… here it is!”

Jim: “I’ve always tried to keep in close contact with Steven throughout the years in hopes that we could work together again. I was chosen to work with Steven playing bass on the 2017 European Tour for Kill Ritual with Hirax and the mighty legends RAVEN. We had a great time with all the bands involved and I kept bringing up the option of reforming Imagika. Steven thought it was just a blast from the past and Kill Ritual was the primary focus at the time. I followed up with the idea when Kill Ritual played Sacramento on tour as I was on bass for a couple of the shows and contacted Norman to maybe drop by since he lives in the area. It was definitely intentional on my part I’m and glad it happened. We’re all driven to play this style of music and we felt it was time to reform and revisit the band again. I’ve always got compliments regarding Imagika back in the day and fans would ask me why can’t there be a reformation at some time? The music was just so different and creative. I’ve always had a goal to record something new with Steven and Norman again and it’s finally happened!”
Imagika “Only Dark Hearts Survive” track listing;

  1. Where Our Demons Dwell
  2. Cast Into Damnation
  3. Prisoners of Fate
  4. Suffocate On Hate
  5. The Spiteful One (video single)
  6. The Faceless Rise
  7. Firefight
  8. Only Dark Hearts Survive (lyric video)

Imagika 2019 is:
Norman Skinner-Vocals
Steven D. Rice-Guitars
Jim Pegram-Bass
Matt Thompson- Drums (studio)
Seamus Gleason-Drums (touring)

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