Masterplan

author MY date 08/02/07

Dark clouds started to gather over Masterplan just before they started work on their upcoming album. Vocalist Jorn Lande's leaving the band was kinda expected so that wasn't a big deal. The shock was when their drummer Uli Kusch left the band. Those were hard times but the band's mastermind Roland Grapow was able to keep the rest of the band together. They found great replacements and completed their third album. So our scribe Miray took on hold with Roland Grapow to hear his opinion on the dark clouds and the calm after the storm. Read on to find out more.

RF.net: Let's start with the hottest news of Masterplan...
First, I'd like to mention that our 3rd album "MK II" is finished and the reviews are really great so far… Release date is the end of February. Our single "Lost And Gone" is already coming out at the end of January. For more info, have a look on our homepage www.master-plan.net. We are really proud about the new line up and the album. Hope to see you all on tour with Saxon from March till May 07.

RF.net: After gaining that much success with the first two albums, Jorn Lande's leaving the band is a disappointment for the fans. On the other side, this departure was kind of expected because he's Jorn Lande, well known with his solo career, not being a part of the band for a long time. But I still wonder, what were the reasons for Jorn Lande’s leaving from the band?
Like you mentioned it already, everybody expected it from the beginning. Jorn is great but not really a team player. He likes to feature only his own name and band. I wish him really luck, even if I think Masterplan was also a special thing for him as well. We are still friends and there wasn't any fight at all when he left! He is a very nice guy.

RF.net: And some time ago, Uli Kusch left the band too. This was a bit of a shock because we were expecting to hear a replacement for Jorn Lande but instead you came up with another guy leaving and he's one of the two founding members. So same question again, why did Uli leave the band?
"We didn't inspire us anymore" is the official statement but I guess he was also just interested in beautiful sin... To make his own kind of band…I don't have a real answer honestly. I was surprised as well!

RF.net: Then the news came quick, you have announced the addition of singer Mike DiMeo and drummer Mike Terrana to the group's ranks. They are surely great musicians but Masterplan lost great musicians as well. How do you think this will affect the band's fan base, I mean do you think the fans will welcome the new line-up well?
They should! The new line up is the best which I can imagine. Everyone is proud to be a member and about the new "MK II" album. I guess the fans will give them easy a chance. For me, Masterplan is a strong band with great melodies, arrangements and sound. So, nothing changed, we even get many compliments already about the new album and line up. I have always been the mastermind behind Masterplan anyway and also the main songwriter. I produced the first album alone with my private money, I know what our sound should be!

RF.net: The recording of the third album took place in your new studio. I guess the line-up changes affected the recording process somehow and it's also the first Masterplan album you worked on alone. How was the recording process?
Honestly I'm very thankful to Andy Sneap and also to Roy Z. I guess I learned so much from them that I can produce alone now on my own. Andy was in my studio in September 06 to help me for some days with the guitar set-up and some studio advices, But he wasn't producing the "MKII" album. He was too busy with other projects, I recorded everything and produced it this time alone. The songs are arranged by Masterplan, mixed in Finland by Mikko Karmila and mastered by Mika Jussila again.

RF.net: Last question, a honest one, hope you won't mind. Despite the great musicians announced as the replacements, it's clear that Masterplan had one of the hardest recording processes and some of the fans, including me, are worried about the band's future. And I wonder, are you hopeful?
After so much shit last year, it could only be better, (also my daddy died). I would say yes, we'll have a great year 2007. I know it, the same feeling I had on the first Masterplan album. The song writing gap is filled with Axel Mackenrott and Jan S. Eckert now, who are great songwriters as well. Just check it out and you will hear ;O) Our album kicks ass with feeling and great melodies, like always. Mike DiMeo is a fantastic singer and teamworker with great ideas and has the wish to rise with Masterplan. Mike Terrana is also fantastic and an old friend of mine. For Masterplan the best drummer for my taste! He said the "MKII" album is the best album he did over the last 10 years ;O)

RF.net: Thanks for your time Mr. Grapown
thanx as well, ;O)

See ya soon

Roland, Masterplan

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