Prog Metallers Mind Key Return
Mind Key debuted in 2004 with "Journey of a Rough Diamond," an album that showed the excellent potential of the Neapolitan combo. With a colorful sound, akin to prog metal giants such as Dream Theater, Symphony X, Evergrey, and Pain of Salvation, Mind Key's music also leaned toward a more mature and song-oriented approach inspired by '80s/'90s hard rock. Right before the release of the album, the original singer Mark Basile left the group, and in preparation of the tour dates, the guys met for the first time Aurelio Fierro Jr. a singer with a vast experience, especially in theaters. He was able to give some splendid performances, especially at the gigs that the band landed as support of Dream Theater for the Italian "Train of Thought Tour 2004." "These guys sound really excellent!" raved drummer Mike Portnoy.
Mind Key played more live dates in support of Vision Divine and Pendragon and also appeared at the Progpower Europe Festival with shows in Poland, Switzerland, Holland, Germany, and France. During the Polish dates, a live DVD was recorded, entitled "Habemus Poland," with Giorgio Adamo as frontman. However, he soon left to make space for the return of Aurelio Fierro.
"We decided to go for Aurelio at the end of the songwriting sessions," said founding member and keyboardist Dario De Cicco. "Note after note, chord after chord we realized that the songs begged for Aurelio's voice and it seemed almost a necessary decision to make. I think we did the right choice, as only with his astonishing performances we were able to reach what we really wanted from the new material."
The band began the recording of the second album "Pulse for a Graveheart," simplifying their songwriting and giving Fierro the chance to showcase his immense vocal potential, which can be described as a powerful mix of Ronnie James Dio, David Coverdale, and Jorn Lande. The album was later mixed and mastered by none other than Dennis Ward (Pink Cream 69, Angra, Krokus, Place Vendome) to ensure the best sounding quality.
"We knew from the beginning that Dennis was the right choice," said guitarist Emanuele Colella. "Since the first communication together, a perfect synergy was built. He could understand our need and desire to combine a modern melodic metal sound with our progressive roots and a heavier edge. He could totally deliver what we and the music needed, he's just great."
"Pulse for a Graveheart" also features some amazing guest musicians, such as Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater, Alice Cooper), who plays a keyboard solo on "Citizen of Greed," Reb Beach (Whitesnake, Winger) on "Now Until Forever," and Tom Englund from Evergrey, dueting with Elio Fierro on "Graveheart." Mind Key's line-up now includes: Aurelio Fierro on vocals, Emanuele Colella on guitars, Dario De Cicco on keyboards, and Andrea Stipa on drums.
"Pulse for a Graveheart" introduces to the fans to a completely re-designed band, with a mature attitude and astonishing songwriting. "I hope the new record will give Mind Key the chance to get rid of the label of 'prog metal band in the style of...' and bring us to a different status," said Stipa. "We aim to be a metal band - still staying true to our diverse influences ranging from progressive to hard and melodic rock - but with a personal and trademark sound." Get ready for one the prog metal revelations of 2009!
The final track listing includes: "Sunset Highway," "The Seventh Seal," "Citizen of Greed," "Crusted Memories," "Dead Fame Hunter," "Ventotene (The Island)," "Graveheart," "Eye of a Stranger," "Now Until Forever," and "A New Generation."
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