Exposé Online banner

Mastermind — Insomnia
(Lion Music LMC279, 2010, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2010-07-01

Insomnia Cover art

In 2005, five years after their previous, Angels of the Apocalypse, a Mastermind single called “Broken” appeared, featuring three new songs, an extended mix of the title cut, and four great live cuts – close to 45 minutes in all, featuring their new singer Tracy McShane, plus a mention that the full length, all-new Insomnia album would be coming in 2006. Well, so it took a bit more time than expected, but the album is finally here. Two cuts from the single are here along with eight new tracks, and after half a dozen listens I think it’s safe to say this is exactly the kind of record that Mastermind fans would be expecting – a tight-as-a-nut performance from brothers Bill and Rich Berends (guitar / vox and drums respectively), keyboardist Jens Johansson, and McShane’s powerful voice out front guiding the proceedings, with an assortment of different bassists, track depending. The sound is a solid hard-rock oriented progressive, but avoids the clichés of ‘prog metal,’ instead calling muses from an earlier time, before metal, and forming it into a blistering attack that is at once forceful, effective and satisfying. Unlike some of the earlier discs, there is only one instrumental here, but I’m not complaining. Guitarist Berends handles nearly all the songwriting and lyrics, as was the case on the six previous studio albums (all revisited in preparation for this review), but the result here tops all of those; that’s correct – I’m saying this is Mastermind’s best album to date.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 38, 2010 releases

Related artist(s): Mastermind, Bill Berends

More info
http://mastermind.bandcamp.com/album/insomnia

Latest news

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more

2018-02-26
Adelbert von Deyen RIP – Word reaches us that German electronic musician Adelbert von Deyen has died. His recorded legacy reaches back to 1978, when Sky Records released Sternzeit. Von Deyen, who was born October 25, 1953 in Süderbrarup, was also known as a painter and graphic artist. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Ozric Tentacles - The Floor's Too Far Away – One can always count on Ozrics to deliver a disc full of captivating grooves, shredding guitar solos, surreal swirling psychedelic atmospheres, unusual rhythmic textures, and clever sonic gimmicks....  (2007) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues