Masterplan - Aeronautics

Year of Release: 2005
Label: AFM Records
Catalog Number: AFM 084-2
Format: CD
Total Time: 54:07:00

In 2003, the progressive music world shook on its foundations when former Helloween members Roland Grapow (guitars) and Uli Kusch (drums) joined forces with Viking vocalist J?rn Lande, one of the best metal throats both then and now, and formed Masterplan. The self titled album hit like a bomb and brought the band nothing but good reviews. After some two years they return with a follow up, showing it was not a one album band, but Masterplan is here to stay.

The first thing I noticed while listening to Aeronautics was the amazing good sound quality. The bass of Eckert is really full in the mix, and his play with Kusch results in a solid rhythm section. Although Masterplan often is labelled power metal, if I would have to label it, I?d say they are somewhere between power and progressive metal. The power mainly comes from Lande (of course) who absolutely steals the show, but also the fat drums of Kusch help in this department. Although there is a fast double bass, it does not really dominate.

The progressive elements are supplied by Grapow, with his melodic riffs, and in lesser way by Mackenrott. The keyboard play is a bit scarce, and in many occasions it just fills, or is used in intros. A pity, for if Mackenrott got more room, the sound of Masterplan would be even better! The strong compositions and the sublime play of the band push Aeronautics in the higher metal regions. Nevertheless, I do miss some variation. Most songs sound fairly similar. It gives me the feeling the band is playing it safe here and does not choose to experiment. However, here closing track "Black In The Burn" stands out positively, as here the band takes the time to work out the song. With great guitar work by Grapow, nice tempo changes and of course, THE voice of Lande!

Masterplan is like falling in love: first you get a crush, but then it becomes love. The second album does not contain many surprises, but after the crush for the first album, Grapow & Co. with Aeronautics show the crush has become love. Because no matter how you look at it, Aeronautics is a strong album of very high quality. Let?s hope this love will last many albums.

Crimson Rider / Back For My Life / Wounds / I'm Not Afraid / Headbangers Ballroom / After This War / Into The Arena / Dark From The Dying / Falling Sparrow / Black In The Burn

Jørn Lande - vocals
Roland Grapow - guitars
Uli Kusch - drums
Jan S. Eckert - bass guitar
Axel Mackenrott - keyboards

Masterplan (2003)
Back For My Life (ep) (2004)
Aeronautics (2005)
Lost And Gone (ep) (2007)
MKII (2007)
Time To Be King (2010)
Novum Initium (2013)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin DE

Added: January 17th 2005
Reviewer: Marcel Haster
Artist website:
Hits: 961
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]