Masterplan - MK II

12 songs
53:32 minutes


Masterplan are a band formed by ex-Helloween guitar player Roland Grapow. Since their second CD Aeronautics, there have been two line-up changes. The new members have a high reputation: ex-Rage drummer Mike Terrana and ex-Riot singer Mike DiMeo. The other two musicians Jan Eckert and Axel Mackenrott have gathered some experience with Iron Savior and Punch TV. Everyone who expects therefore a cool power speed metal album, as the aforementioned bands let you hope, will be disappointed.

Masterplan also have some faster songs like Warriors Cry, but generally they prefer a less aggressive approach and if I have to find comparisons, I would come up with Pretty Maids and Europe. The single Lost And Gone is typical AOR rock with penetrating keyboards and too long guitar solos. Another influence seems to be Yngwie Malmsteen which can be heard on Take Me Over and Watching The World.

My general problem with MK II is the constant lack of tempo and heaviness. Even if there is a song with a slightly brutal approach like Masterplan, it somehow doesn't kick enough. Worst of all is the terribly mellow I'm Gonna Win.

MK II is a retro album and maybe some fans of Eighties metal will like it. But it's not up to my taste as it doesn't cover the metal genres I adored two decades ago. If you consider the popular band line-up, the album could certainly have been more breathtaking.

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