Hard Rock Music Archives
Mastermind (1986-present): a Progressive Metal band from Browns Mills, New Jersey, USA.
sort of heavier version of Emerson Lake And Palmer, Mastermind were a progressive rock/heavy metal band with occasional influences from classical music and Rush as well. For most of their time Mastermind have been a duet, with founding brothers Rich Berends (drums) and Bill Berends (vocals/guitars/bass) for Volume One (1990), Volume Two "Brainstorm" (1991), Mastermind III - Tragic Symphony (1995) and Mastermind IV - Until Eternity (1996).
With Phil Antolino on bass they would complete Live In Tokyo (1997), but he was gone by the time Jens Johansson came in on keyboards for Excelsior (1999) before Lisa Bouchelle took over vocals on Angels Of The Apocalypse (2000). The live effort Prog, Fusion, Metal, Leather, & Sweat (2001) followed.
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In February 2007, after keeping up a blistering touring pace for twenty years, performing every year between 1987 and 2007 in the USA, Europe, and Japan, the Berends shifted gears by starting a cover band, calling themselves Berends Bros. Band (BBB), to have a little fun with their roots of blues and old school psychedelic blues rock. Recruiting blues rocker John Benussi on bass from a local Jimi Hendrix tribute act Axis they played a repertoire of old and new. The band performed live for the first time in March 2007 to great response, and have played extensively around New Jersey and Pennsylvania throughout 2007.
The Berends brothers have also played as The Berends/Wilson Trio (BWT), a journey into the music of Cream with Ed Wilson (bass/vocals).
Insomnia followed in 2010.
After moving to São Paulo, Brazil, Bill Berends formed a new version of Mastermind in 2019 with Brazilian musicians Gabriel Costa (bass) and Carlos Camasi (drums). With this line-up the group played a few gigs, most notably the 3rd Totem Prog Festival in São Paulo in 2019.
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