MASTERPLAN, which features former HELLOWEEN guitarist Roland Grapow, last month released a new studio album titled “PumpKings” via AFM. The effort consists of reworked versions of HELLOWEEN songs from albums that Grapow played on during his time in the legendary German power metal band. Included are three songs from HELLOWEEN‘s “Pink Bupples Go Ape” (1991) LP, two from “Chameleon” (1993), three from “Master Of The Rings” (1994), one from “The Time Of The Oath” and two from “The Dark Ride” (2000).
Speaking to Heavy Music Headquarters, Grapow stated about his decision to make “PumpKings”: “I had the idea to re-record my HELLOWEEN songs a long time ago, even in the beginning of my work in MASTERPLAN.
“When you write a song, you have your own view on it; somewhere inside you know how the song should sound, how it should be arranged and so on,” he continued. “Of course, during the work on it with the band, your ideal picture of your creation will be changed due to many reasons. Sometimes these changes are for better, but in some cases, you can be disappointed or disagree with them. And this is a normal situation, because you are working together with other band members and the fans are listening to the result of collective work that includes hours of analysis of guitars parts, ways of singing, arrangement elements. Every song is the result of teamwork and compromises. That’s why I had the idea to re-record my songs that I wrote for HELLOWEEN, but to do it in my way, how I see them now.”
Roland also discussed MASTERPLAN‘s recent drummer change, with the addition of Kevin Kott as the replacement for Martin “Marthus” Skaroupka.
“As you know, Martin Skarupka is a member of CRADLE OF FILTH, and sometimes their tour dates overlap with ours,” he said. “When it happened the first time and we needed to find session drummer for our show, Rick [Altzi, vocals] introduced us to Kevin. Rick played with him in the band called AT VANCE. Later when Martin got very busy with CRADLE OF FILTH‘s new album and tour, we decided that Kevin should be our band drummer and Martin will play if Kevin cannot do this. We are very happy with this decision. Kevin is a very cool and easy-going guy and great drummer. And yes, we have a good relationship with Martin.”
“PumpKings” track listing:
01. The Chance
02. Someone’s Crying
04. Step Out Of Hell
05. Mr. Ego
06. Still We Go
07. Escalation 666
08. The Time Of The Oath
10. The Dark Ride
11. Take Me Home
MASTERPLAN‘s first-ever concert release came out in October 2015. “Keep Your Dream aLive” was made available as DVD/CD and Blu-ray/CD sets, both including the entire show from Masters Of Rock festival, recordings from Wacken Open Air, footage from the band’s Asian tour and ProgPower USA, as well as all five official MASTERPLAN video clips. The Masters Of Rock show is featured on the CD.
MASTERPLAN‘s last collection of all-new material, “Novum Initium”, was released in June 2013 via AFM.