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Mastercastle - Lighthouse Pathetic Award winner

Mastercastle
Lighthouse Pathetic
by Kevin Lewis at 28 March 2022, 7:27 AM

MASTERCASTLE is an Italian Heavy Metal band with a lot of Neo-Classical and Power Metal influences. “Lighthouse Pathetic” is a fantastic showcase of their ability to play intricate heavy metal with precision and power. This disc was released on January 10, 2022, on the Diamond Prod label and is available on most platforms.

One of the first things you might notice if you like to look at the credits is that Fabio Lione is featured on two different songs, “Who Cares for The Moon” and “Call Your Wings.” If you have paid attention to recent releases, you will know that he has been all over the place and worked on lots of projects. Of course, this is because he is that good. For MASTERCASTLE to get him to guest on their record, you know it must be pretty good.

And Fabio does what he does best on those two songs, kick vocal ass! One of the most elite Power Metal vocalists in the business today, Fabio compliments Giorgia beautifully. Both songs are excellent. The blending of the two voices is smooth and they harmonize really well.

There are two instrumentals as well, “Rosso Profundo” and “Fantastic Planet.” Both are excellent examples of the Neo-Classical and Power Metal crossovers this band does exceptionally well. Some parts are jazzy/funky, some ethereal and ambient, others completely shredded. Featuring tons of symphonic elements and classical phrasing, the songs are beautifully composed and performed.

For the heavier side, look at songs like “The Lighthouse Pathetic” and “That’s All.” The riffs are darker in tone and more menacing in their presentation. The rhythms are almost sludgy. They kind of ooze throughout the song, carrying the riff on a river of sound. The tuning on “That’s All” is really cool. The echoing of the guitars and the vocals add a lot of texture and depth to this song. This is a really good song. The solo is well-paced and beautifully timed.

Diamonds” is a bit of a surprise. The guitar tones are much lighter at the start. This is not as heavy as many of the songs on the album. It shows a different side to the band and really works well. This is the song that really makes sure the band has a lot of room to work. They can go dark and heavy or light and powerful.

The final song on the disc is a cover tune, and an excellent choice. The MASTERCASTLE remake of the classic ACCEPT track “Fast As A Shark” is very well done. Using growled male vocals with the clean female vocals is a good choice. It gives the song a lot of range. The guitar work is phenomenal, and the rhythm section crushes this one. As a fan of the original, I gladly acknowledge this is an excellent rendition of a great song. This is one of the best cover tunes I’ve heard in recent memory.

MASTERCASTLE is a really good group of musicians who combine their individual talents into something that is a joy to hear. The guitars are stunning throughout. Pier Gonella reminds me a lot of Wolf Hoffman from ACCEPT, so it is no surprise they chose a song from that band to remake. The whole album is very good. The instrumentals are very melodic and help tie the whole album together really well. Overall, this is an excellent record.

Songwriting:  9
Musicianship:  10
Memorability:  9
Production:  9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Who Cares for The Moon (featuring Fabio Lione)
2. The Lighthouse Pathetic
3.That’s All
4. Rosso Profondo
5. Call Your Wings (featuring Fabio Lione)
6. Monster Whispers
7. Diamonds
8. Fantastic Planet
9. Space
10. Fast as A Shark (ACCEPT cover)
Lineup:
Giorgia Guegli – Vocals
Steve Vawamas – Bass
Alessio Spallarossa – Drums
Pier Gonella – Guitar
Record Label: Diamond Prod
     


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Edited 26 November 2022
 

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