MasterCastle – “The Pheonix” (2009)


Label : Lion Music

Review by Tony Cannella

MasterCastle is the project put together by Labyrinth/Necrodeath guitarist Pier Gonella. Their style is symphonic epic guitar metal. It’s true that lovers of guitar should really gravitate to and embrace this band, but that shouldn’t scare non-musicians (such as myself) away. There is plenty of great stuff to keep us entertained. Before getting into the music on this CD – which incidently is titled “The Phoenix” and is out on Lion music one of the premiere hard rock and metal labels out there. Where was I ? Oh yeah, I was about to introduce the other band members, so without further adieu, joining Pier in MasterCastle are: Giorgia Gueglio (Vocals), Steve Vawamas (Bass) and special guest drummer is Alessandro Bissa. Let’s get to it…;The track “Words Are Swords” begins things and immediately I was impressed with the power of the track and the imposing guitar riff that opens things. Giorgia‘s vocals are quite good and a good fit for the music. Pier made solid choices in assembling this band, that much is obvious. Did I mention the solo? This is the sort of thing that musicians should eat up. The next track “Princess of Love” is more of a mid-tempo track, that features another cool guitar solo and a great melody. “Space” brings the intensity and speed up a notch and Giorgia really shows off her range on this one, man she can sing and the solo by Pier just burns. “My Screams” is the first of two instrumentals and features just a classic metal opening riff and some more frenetic guitar work. The next track “Lullaby Noir” is an emotional ballad that is also quite pretty. The title song “The Phoenix” kicks things up a gear (or two, or three) and is one of the heavier tunes on offer and a definite highlight. “Greedy Blade” and “Dawn of Promises” keeps things moving along at a nice pace and ,in particular, this song is fantastic. “Memories” is the second instrumental track and it is a bit slower and more melodic than the first. “Cradle of Stone” brings things to a close on a good note.The Phoenix” is a rock solid release that should have fans (and non fans) of guitar music salivating. Pier and Giorgia make a great combination and the material on The Phoenix” makes that abundantly clear. With so few guitar heroes around these days, hopefully Pier and MasterCastle will be able to fill that void. The thing that really impresses me about MasterCastle is that while it’s true there is plenty of stellar guitar work on The Phoenix”, there are also some pretty great songs as well and that is the most important thing.

Rating – 80/100



  1. Words Are Swords
  2. Princess of Love
  3. Space
  4. My Screams
  5. Lullaby Noir
  6. The Phoenix
  7. Greedy Blade
  8. Dawn of Promises
  9. Memories
  10. Cradle of Stone

Line Up 

  • Giorgia Gueglio – Vocals
  • Pier Gonella – Guitar
  • Steve Vawamas – Bass
  • Alessandro Bissa – Drums


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