Rating:
7.5
Masterplan - MK II
23 February 2007


01. Phoenix Rising
02. Warrior's Cry
03. Lost And Gone
04. Keeps me Burning
05. Take Me Over
06. I'm Gonna Win
07. Watching The World
08. Call The Gypsy
09. Trust In You
10. Masterplan
11. Enemy
12. Heart Of Darkness


After the successful release of 2005's "Aeronautics", cracks already started to show within the ranks of the super group. Singer Jørn Lande decided to leave the band last year because of "musical differences" and as if that wasn't bad enough for the band, drummer Uli Kusch also decided to take his leave, commenting "we haven't inspired each other anymore".
The group were soon to recruit their replacements in the form of ex-Riot singer Mike DiMeo and Axel Rudi Pell and ex-Rage drummer Mike Terrana.

The album is fittingly titled "MK II" to mark the beginning of the new Masterplan and also fitting is the name of the grand introduction track "Phoenix Rising".
The album opens in blazing form with "Warrior's Cry" which is very much in the same superb vein as "Crimson Rider" from the previous album. Mike Terrana constantly blasting his drum kit and Mike DiMeo showing off his voice well through the song and its extremely catchy chorus.

Unfortunately the album finds its way gradually drooping downhill from here. The single "Lost And Gone" loses all momentum the opening song creates, it sounds like Masterplan but something seems to be missing. The song does not flow as perhaps "Enlighten Me" and "Back For My Life" did on previous albums.
"Keeps Me Burning" does pick the album up again to some degree but just the same as all of the other songs on the album they never quite manage to pick the momentum back up.

The two new members of the band do change the sound of the band a bit, but not as much as you might expect. The drums are good but seem to diverse less then before and are more straight forward, and Mike DiMeo had some big boots to fill when he decided he would join Masterplan but he does himself well on the album. I couldn't help drawing the comparison between him and his fellow New Yorker and Axel Rudi Pell singer Johnny Gioeli, but he also doesn't sound totally dissimilar to former singer Jørn Lande.

The rest of the album as a whole is, lets say 'pleasant' even though one or two tracks do stick out. "Call The Gypsy" sounds different to anything Masterplan have done before and also "Masterplan" does show the band still has fire left in them. This song will be great played live with the fans punching the air and chanting "Ma-ster-plan!" along with the song.

All in all this album left me in a state of ambivalence, as it definitely has its moments ("Warrior's Cry", "Keeps Me Burning" and "Masterplan") but also sports some unimpressive and 'under the radar' tracks.
When the previous members left I think peoples main worry about the future of the band was the talent and ability of the new guys to take over, but I think the main asset Masterplan has lost is Uli's fine song writing abilities.


Band profile: Masterplan
Album: MK II


 



Written on 28.02.2007 by
Baz Anderson
Member of Staff since 2006.
More reviews by Baz Anderson ››



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ThunderAxe1989 - 28.02.2007 at 23:12  
the singer left? SHIT! i really liked him . Now I'm having doubts as to whether I want this or not. I'll have to hear samples.
iaberis - 28.02.2007 at 23:20  
Hm... Interesting... If I find it in the stores, I'm gonna give it a chance.
=maD.Doc:. - 28.02.2007 at 23:21  
Lowelas OF FIRE, the new singer almost sounds like Jorn (in a few parts and on a few tunes in his voice they're almost totally identical), so you don't have to worry about it not being good. And about the rewiev, I agree and also disagree at the same time. Sure it's not as good as "Masterplan" or "Aeronautics" but it's still Masterplan and all the ingredients that makes Masterplan is still there and it is a hell of a record. As "Masterplan" gets a 9.5 and "Aeronautics" gets a 9 from me, "MK II" absolutley gets 8.5 or more from me. From here I think Masterplan can get nowhere but up
Sheol - 28.02.2007 at 23:38  
This is a great album. I really like Terrana and DiMeo. I agree with Mangoo, DiMeo sounds quite like Jorn sometimes. He does these "Yeaahs" that Jorn use to do.
Spyroid - 01.03.2007 at 00:36  
I can't stand Lande, and although they're similar I like DiMeo very much more. I've only heard one track, it's better than old Masterplan but I will never like this band. It's a waste with such great musicians, I don't see how they can be so bad. Glad Uli left now, hope he can concentrate on something better like his Beautiful Sin.
And the last sentence probably says it all.
dismaleuphony - 01.03.2007 at 04:46  
Forgettable, generic release IMO... I doubt I'll listen to much else besides one of the tracks you point out here: "Call The Gypsy," which shows an interesting direction they should've tried on many more songs. A low 6 for me...
Herzebeth - 01.03.2007 at 07:49  
Dude you write very cool reviews Congratulations and all!! Check your PM's, I have a request
JCRuiz - 03.03.2007 at 13:56  
this is a not bad album, but i think the peole was used to the voice of jorn lande, mike Dimeo is great vocalist but this is not his group. each band have a vocalist.

its a shame that mr lande don't continue with masterplan, but i hope Dimeo will can replace the other vocalist
Wollan - 03.03.2007 at 17:18  
The new album "MK II" is good, the new vocalist is also pretty good, but not as good as Jørn Lande. Also the former drummer in the band, Uli Kusch, have been replaced by Mike Terrana from Axel Rudi Pell.
jaymzb666 - 03.03.2007 at 19:29  
I totally agree with the overall review. After a week long exstensive listening of the album, I found myself returning to the Jorn albums to hear the true masterplan at work. Whilst Warriors cry, to some exstent lost and gone and Kepp me burning are good songs once I got past these my interest begins to wain and by the time Masterplan comes on I had fully lost my interest. There is definetly no Falling Sparrow stand out track on this album. Jorn isn't completely missed and Mike's vocals more than stand up. But when Jorn's departure was announced I wasn't worried because the main creative songwriter was still there. Uli's and Rolands songwriting was outstanding on the first two albums. Even during their time in helloween you could see that Uli had a special something to him. So it was his departure that really had me worried. And I think I was right.
Sorry guys but this album just doesn't Enlighten Me and it will take something special next time around to bring me crawling back for my life.
SORRY! 6/10
JohnDoe - 04.03.2007 at 12:55  
Pretty good album, but inferior to their previous works. Musically correct I'd say, that's all.
BlankFile - 09.03.2007 at 16:22  
I see here some unfair commentary´s... Its true that Masterplan has lost two important members, but in the other hand, also gained two very talented members. An Excelllent vocalist, different from Jorn Land definitely.
People may not agree with me, but i really think this album is a masterpiece in the power metal genre. Attention this new Masterplan is a more power metal band than hard Metal, maybe thats the reason that for some people this album is not as good as the other 2 fantástic albums indeed. I simply love all the work that this band has built, and this album is no exception.
My advice to all Masterplan Fans is simple: Please guys listen very careffuly to this album, Listen many times the same. Bealieve me... It will Blow your fucken mind!! All the songs are Catchy as hell, and im sorry mr. reviewer but i do not agree with you at all. I think this album is powerfull at its whole best!
Off course it has its highlights: "Warrior´s Cry" . "Lost and Gone" " Keeps me Burning", "Take me Over", "Watching the World", "Call the Gypsy" (What a Riff!), Even the slowest song of the album is incredible being"trust in you", and off course "Masterplan".
This album has it all. Listen to it, Enjoy it at its best! And fucken Stay Metal! |m|
BlankFile - 09.03.2007 at 16:25  
Oh... and i bought the album last tuesday... hehehe

Stay MEtal!!
Baz Anderson - 09.03.2007 at 16:45  
Written by BlankFile on 09.03.2007 at 16:22

I see here some unfair commentary´s... Its true that Masterplan has lost two important members, but in the other hand, also gained two very talented members. An Excelllent vocalist, different from Jorn Land definitely.
People may not agree with me, but i really think this album is a masterpiece in the power metal genre. Attention this new Masterplan is a more power metal band than hard Metal, maybe thats the reason that for some people this album is not as good as the other 2 fantástic albums indeed. I simply love all the work that this band has built, and this album is no exception.
My advice to all Masterplan Fans is simple: Please guys listen very careffuly to this album, Listen many times the same. Bealieve me... It will Blow your fucken mind!! All the songs are Catchy as hell, and im sorry mr. reviewer but i do not agree with you at all. I think this album is powerfull at its whole best!
Off course it has its highlights: "Warrior´s Cry" . "Lost and Gone" " Keeps me Burning", "Take me Over", "Watching the World", "Call the Gypsy" (What a Riff!), Even the slowest song of the album is incredible being"trust in you", and off course "Masterplan".
This album has it all. Listen to it, Enjoy it at its best! And fucken Stay Metal! |m|


yes well its completely fine to disagree with me if you like.. but there are quite a few people backing what I have said as well..

I agree - I do recommend this album to Masterplan fans, I am not telling them to stay away from it at all! its a great album!

its just that I get the feeling this isnt one of them albums that will be talked about in some years time like maybe the first two are..
BlankFile - 24.03.2007 at 21:06  
I Understand perfectly what you´ve said. The band is different, its a fact, but the album still kicks ass. The songs are very catchy aswell, as the vocals are fine either. Off course It is difficult to forget Lande and Uli... They´ve made excellent albums (Both Masterplan I and Aeronautics).
But still i honestly think that this album is equally great as the previous 2 releases, in a different kind of style... As i said, in my opinion, in these days Masterplan has more power metal roots than hard metal. the previous releases had... let´s say 50/50 of both styles...
I respect every opinion, please don´t misjudge me.
Long live Masterplan! And stay Metal!
Zenzero - 22.01.2008 at 18:13  
I didn't like jorn land!! Specially after the show in milan in 2005!! And I have to say that i like MKII!! Even if i prefer Masterplan!!!!
Uirapuru - 19.03.2008 at 01:23  
What??!! They've change the vocals... i didnt even notice... its almost the same thing. Yeah, this album is slightly worst than the two previous... but still its very good. Keeps Me Burning and Watching The World call my atention, and Take Me Over is the best track. 8/10

MK II is better in the video games
Zenzero - 06.02.2009 at 02:10  
First listening... bleah
second listening... bleah

third... ok

fourth, i can say that some are great songs!! keeps me burning, lost and gone, i'm gonna win...

but the first album is ten billion times better!
BlankFile - 20.06.2009 at 16:36  
I think Jorne Lande´s back. Now thats some great news!
MK II could have been even greater with "the voice" aka Jorn Lande.

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