Exposé Online banner

Mastermind — Volume One
(Cyclops , 1987/1996, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1996-08-01

Volume One Cover art

Ten years after it was recorded and released as a cassette, and about six years after its original CD incarnation on ZNR records, Mastermind's debut is finally available once again. It establishes many of the surviving aspects of Mastermind's current sound, that furious fretted firestorm that can fool the listener into thinking "Hey, that's a great keyboard player," through the use of guitar synths with keyboard-type effects, and the powerhouse "blow out the main transformers" approach to classical-type themes in a rock format. Mastermind's ideals were (and still are) set primarily by a rock base firmly rooted in the late 60s and early 70s, before the heyday of so-called 'progressive rock.' Not constrained by the limitations of such labels, the band moves freely between the poles of the rock idiom. Certain tunes like "Long Distance Love Affair" and "Eye of the Storm" weigh in on the more accessible side of the scale, the latter could be a cross between Van Halen and ELP if it weren't for Berends' tenor crooning. Others, like "Fanfare" dial into a more classical-rock style. "On the Wings of Mercury" is a four-minute hard fusion fireball that incinerates everything in its path, while the closer "War Machine" hints at what was to come on Volume 2. For this reissue, two bonus tracks have been added, both recorded a few years after the other material, both vocal tracks in the four minute range. Is that Billy Idol's voice guesting on "Reach for the Sky"? Mastermind's debut still stands strong today a decade after its original release.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 10, 1996 releases, 1987 recordings

Related artist(s): Mastermind, Bill Berends

More info
http://mastermind.bandcamp.com/album/mastermind-volume-one

Latest news

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Twenty Sixty Six and Then - Reflections! – Twenty Sixty Six and Then's Reflections on the Future remains one of the most legendary German prog LPs. As the master tapes were lost long ago, a reissue didn't seem likely, except as an LP...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues