Archive for the 'video' Category

Brainstorm live (complete) video

August 15th, 2016 | Category: Mastermind,music,video

Recently uploaded a video of Brainstorm live from our 1997 US tour with Fish. Enjoy.



Mastermind live at the Odeon, Cleveland, Ohio

Bill Berends: guitar, MIDI-guitar, vocal
Rich Berends: drums & percussion
Phil Antolino: bass, MIDI-pedals

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Mastermind: Insomnia – 5 years on

February 23rd, 2015 | Category: history,Mastermind,music,video

February 19th, 2015 marked the 5th anniversary of Mastermind’s 7th full length studio album release – Insomnia – featuring vocalist Tracy McShane’s album debut and Jens Johansson returning for his third outing with the Berends brothers progressive rock outfit. The darker, heavier sound is something of a departure from previous titles, but continues an evolution that began with the explosive instrumental fire of Excelsior, morphing into the female fronted symphonic prog-metal of Angels of the Apocalypse, and evolving yet further into something unusual and quite unique. This was a 21st Century Mastermind for sure, yet many elements of the Berends signature sound are still present and identifiable.

However, Insomnia almost never saw the light of day. After a long and arduous search for a suitable new label, the album was eventually released worldwide by Lion Music in Finland, run by Swedish guitarist Lars Eric Mattsson. Changes in personnel, changes in the record business, broadband internet, the global economy, all contributed to the delay. Most of the recording was done years earlier between 2002 and 2004 with two songs released as a preview on the Broken EP of 2005 along with several live tracks. Almost a full album in itself. The band gigged often during the early 21st Century building a receptive new audience on the live circuit, so a lot of the material road tested and gaining traction with new fans.



Some of the older prog fans didn’t really follow, but overall the album was well received and critically accepted (reviews) with many folks applauding a fresh new approach and some even calling it the best Mastermind album to date. Things being as they were, however, with departing members and frustrations with the business side of things, the band had ceased performing live by early 2007 and the album was released without proper live support even though the songs were being performed live during the preceding years.

It was never intended for this to be the last of Mastermind’s album output, but without finding suitable new players and no real support from the outside, Mastermind slipped into a coma of sorts and has been on indefinite hiatus since 2007. Bill and Rich continued to perform as The Berends Brothers Band and Bill Berends stepped out on his own with an instrumental solo album in 2012 and continues to create new music, some of which was – and yet may still be – destined to become Mastermind VIII. This my still happen at some point.

So it is somewhat with mixed emotion that we view things 5 years on. We made a good album that not enough people heard and it’s a shame we couldn’t manage to go out and support it live. For those who have listened and purchased a copy, we thank you for your support. Everyone else, get listening! As for the future… anything is possible.

Mastermind: Insomnia on CDBaby

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911

September 11th, 2013 | Category: history,Mastermind,music,News,video

September 11th, 2001… I will never forget that day. Ever. I was awakened by the sound of Tracy McShane screaming out of my answering machine “Billy, Billy!! Turn on the TV!!!” I turned it on just in time to watch the second plane slam into the south tower. No words can describe how I felt as I watched the towers collapse, live on TV. Absolute horror.

Much of the Insomnia album was written and recorded in the time between that fateful day and the “shock and awe” attack on Bahgdad which I also watched in horror, live on TV. The days that followed were very surreal and unsettling. I tried to put it out of my mind.

Listening to this music takes me right back to that time and in many ways I feel like I have ignored it because of that – still wanting to put it all of it out of my mind. For those who never made the connection – and surprisingly, not one single review ever did – that is why the twin beacons were included on the inner sleeve artwork. It was the zeitgeist, the dark shadow that malingered over everything. We went as a band to ground zero not long after the attack, saw the beacons, witnessed the destruction up close. It felt… personal.

Although this piece of music Last Cigarette wasn’t written specifically with 911 in mind, it was always in the back of my mind. Looking back, I think it probably best captures how I was feeling at the time and even though it’s been 12 years now, it’s still hard for me to listen to sometimes. Along with some other personal issues, it was a very difficult time. I didn’t want to deal with it and because of that, combined with dramatic changes in the music business, it took years to see the album released.  Insomnia almost never saw the light of day.

Musically speaking, this is my personal favorite on the album. The guitar solo-turn-duet with Jens Johansson’s brilliant counterpoint is probably my favorite musical moment. Looking back now with some objectivity, I still think we made a good, solid album. Life goes on.

-Bill Berends 9/11/13

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Insomnia online

September 06th, 2013 | Category: Mastermind,News,video

Better late than never? Uploaded a few tunes from the Insomnia album on youtube so you can listen at your leisure anywhere in the world! It took a while to convince the label that maybe people should be able to hear some of the music from the hitherto “invisible” Mastermind album. Of course you’ll enjoy it so much you’ll go purchase a copy right away! Right? Right!

That’s the idea anyway. Here you go… Insomnia playlist (youtube)

Available from iTunes | CDBaby | Lion Music | read the reviews

Thanks for listening! More to come.

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Video archives – Electric Factory with Joe Satriani

June 20th, 2013 | Category: history,Mastermind,music,News,video

Some video from back before the digital revolution, a few clips from the Electric Factory concert in 1997 opening for Joe Satriani. The playlist should run thru all four videos for you.

More to come. Enjoy!

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Bill Berends solo album Kickstarter – last day!

November 04th, 2012 | Category: internet,music,News,video

Less than 26 hours left to go till my solo album Kickstarter campaign wraps up! I couldn’t just leave things hanging with the last video, so here’s a post storm wrap up. It’s been a long, stressful month, but I am super pleased with the outcome!!! If you haven’t already, please get your pre-orders in now, if possible, it may be a while before normal sales begin… however, I may continue pre-orders on my web site ( billberends.com )for another week or so. Check there in a few days to see if that comes together. For now, please go check the kickstarter page here… http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/billberends/1920478859/

Again, many MANY THANKS (!) and a garland of martian fire flowers to everyone who kicked in to help bring this album to life!! You guys ROCK!!!

-Bill

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Bill Berends solo album update!!

October 28th, 2012 | Category: internet,music,News,video,website

Hi folks!! My solo album on Kickstarter as mentioned below has reached its target goal, so this CD will be happening and I couldn’t be more pleased!! You guys are awesome!!! THANKS to ALL of you who helped me reach my goal!!

Now solidly in the funded zone there is still a week to go on Kickstarter and I am cautiously optimistic about hitting a stretch goal of $3,000, in fact, it’s more than halfway there now. So while I am sitting here waiting for hurricane Sandy to come kick my ass (yikes!) I made a new video for your amusement with hopes that a few more folks and Mastermind fans will kick in with pledges and pre-orders before November 5th. Hoping all my east coast friends get thru the storm unscathed and happy Halloween to you all!

To make a pledge or pre-order a CD on kickstarter just go here… thank you!!
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/billberends/1920478859/

Thanks to those who have kicked in already!! Be safe in the storm and wish me luck!

-Bb

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New Bill Berends solo album!

October 08th, 2012 | Category: internet,music,News,video,website

Hi folks, Bill Berends here. I’d like to tell you that I have finally finished my solo album of guitar instrumentals!! I’ve been hinting around at it for awhile now, well… now it is done! But rather than go the traditional route of trying to find a record label, I want to bring the music directly to you and I am asking for your help. I am now taking pre-orders on Kickstarter to raise the funds to get the CD pressed and I am hoping you will participate.

The album is called In My Dreams I Can Fly and features 12 brand new original instrumental works for electric guitar. Sort of in the vein of Joe Satriani or Eric Johnson perhaps, but with my own style and substance. I’ve put a lot of work into it and think it turned out nicely.

There are two videos on Kickstarter that feature sound clips from the album and a bit of a presentation by yours truly. The one down at the bottom seems to be getting the most interest, so please, stop by and have a listen. And, if you could, help me get the word out by sharing anywhere you can… forums, music blogs, facebook, myspace, anyplace. Thanks. The funding drive ends at Midnight, November 5th, 2012 so there isn’t a whole lot of time!!

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/billberends/1920478859/

This is an all-or-nothing proposition with Kickstarter, so your money is not at risk. I either reach my goal and the CD gets pressed, or I don’t – in which case you won’t be charged. I really hope you can help me bring it to fruition by placing a pre-order now. I think it’s a great album that Mastermind fans can enjoy, but it’s good for classic rockers as well, and certainly for guitar enthusiasts! For prog fans I am pleased mention I have Jason Gianni of the Neal Morse band helping me out on drums for this record and Jason kicks ass!

I really hope I can get the CD out to you THIS year because this is a very important record for me. After this album gets released there will be a new Mastermind album coming, possibly next year, but a lot depends on if I can get this new album funded, so I am asking for your help. Thanks for reading and go check it out!

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/billberends/1920478859/

Thanks!!
Bill

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Rare track

June 16th, 2011 | Category: downloads,history,Mastermind,music,News,video

While recording a new Mastermind track exclusively for the upcoming Lion Music Japanese tsunami benefit album I was reminded of another track we recorded many moons ago. An instrumental entitled “Miles To Go Before I Sleep” exclusive to the 3rd Cyclops Records (UK) label sampler and never released anywhere else. It seems as relevant to us now as it did 15 years ago. Since it’s a youtube world, here’s a quick video to keep your eyes happy as well…


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9VhJWwHo8Q

We have now made this track available again for the first time since 1996 on our bandcamp download page… http://mastermind.bandcamp.com/track/miles-to-go-before-i-sleep

We hope you enjoy it and also hope you will check out the tsunami benefit album, primarily because it is a very worthy endeavor! But also because, much like this track, it is another exclusive instrumental piece we are quite pleased with and want you to hear. It might almost seem like these one-off recordings mark turning points in our musical direction… could be!

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Check it out!

November 12th, 2010 | Category: Mastermind,music,reviews,video

An impressionistic music video by Krype Malisque for “Night Flier”, an instrumental track on the new Insomia album… a marvelous interpretation! Very cool. Thanks Krype, nice work!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LFGh9_Q_7Q (stop by and give it a thumbs up!)

Then check out this thoughtful new Mastermind Insomnia review at suite101.com. Very nice.

And finally, for those who haven’t picked up a copy of the new album (yet), head on over to our youtube page for a preview (let the playlist run – and maybe subscribe while you’re there too – more videos to come). Then come on back and stop by the Mastermind store to grab a copy (or three, it just might make a nice Christmas present for someone!). Thanks!

Enjoy.. and spread the word!

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