Brent Hinds

Memorable TV Performances: Mastodon on David Letterman

hqdefault.jpg

10 years ago, Mastodon released their epic masterpiece, Crack The Skye. That album catapulted Mastodon to all sorts of new heights. If you’ve never heard that album, you really should. It’s absolutely incredible. Anyways, during this time, Mastodon started making the rounds of playing on late night TV and their performance of “Oblivion” on the Late Show with David Letterman, was pretty damn good.

Mastodon- Oblivion on the Late Show with David Letterman 2009:

 

Ultimate Set List: Mastodon

mastodon-emperor-of-sand-logo-extralarge_1485563459236

 

I’ve said it before and I’ll continue to say it, Mastodon are the best band to come out since the turn of the century. Through their almost 20 year history, they have continuously made great music. Albums like, Crack The Skye, Leviathan, and Emperor Of Sand are monumental and essential albums as well as 3 of the best since 2000. The mighty Mastodon are true artists in every sense of the word and their songs and albums show that. So, with all that in mind, I worked up my Ultimate Set List for Mastodon.

Guideline 1: What line up of the band would it be

Guideline 2: Where would you want to see the show

Guideline 3: maximum 25 songs (In order of how the set should go)

Lineup: Brann Dailor, Brent Hinds, Troy Sanders, Bill Kelliher, and Scott Kelly

Venue: Troubadour- Los Angeles

Set List:

1) Sultan’s Curse
2) March Of The Fire Ants
3) Iron Tusk
4) Steambreather
5) Oblivion
6) Chimes At Midnight
7) Ancient Kingdom
8) Colony Of Birchmen
9) Dry Bone Valley
10) Andromeda
11) Ember City
12) The Czar: Usurper/Escape/Martyr/Spiral
13) Roots Remain
14) Sleeping Giant
15) Divinations
16) Crusher Destroyer
17) Jaguar God
18) Mother Puncher
19) The Last Baron

Encore (All With Scott Kelly of Neurosis):

20) Diamond In The Witch House
21) Aqua Dementia
22) Crystal Skull
23) Spectrelight
24) Scorpion Breath
25) Crack The Skye

Cover Song: Mastodon (Led Zeppelin)- Stairway To Heaven

mastodon-820x820.jpg

Mastodon recently released a cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway To Heaven.” They did this as a tribute to their late manager Nick John, who passed away due to pancreatic cancer. Mastodon was asked by Nick’s wife to play the song at his funeral. Gojira’s Joe Duplantier (who Nick John also managed),  was at the funeral and recorded the band performing the song on his phone. The band afterwards, went and recorded a full studio version of the song. When the song was released, side A featured the studio version while side B featured the phone recording. Mastodon did a phenomenal job of taking this gem of a classic on. They didn’t stray too far from the original but they definitely knocked it out of the park. Brann Dailor is seriously one of the best singers in rock music. That guys got one hell of a voice.

Mastodon- Stairway To Heaven:

 

Great Music Videos: Mastodon- Oblivion

maxresdefault.jpg
2019 is the ten year anniversary of Mastodon’s epic masterpiece, Crack The Skye. That album is perfect in every way possible. In my humble opinion, it’s one of the best, if not the best album of the 21st century. I could seriously go on and on about how great that album is. One of the other coolest parts of the album was the video for the opening song “Oblivion.” The video was directed by Robert Schober (aka Roboshobo), who’s worked with other bands like Alice In Chains, Metallica and Deftones. According to drummer/vocalist Brann Dailor, the video was influenced by Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. The video itself is just as epic as the song, which makes it all that much cooler. Check it out and do yourself a favor, listen to Crack The Skye, especially if it’s been a minute since you have or if you’ve never heard it before.

Mastodon- Oblivion:

 

 
Mastodon- Crack The Skye:

Soundtrack Only Songs: Mastodon- White Walker from Game of Thrones

R-8130674-1455719398-6642.jpeg.jpg

A couple years back the folks who make Game of Thrones released a “soundtrack” album of songs written about the show. One of the most stand out songs from that release was Mastodon’s contribution to it. The song “White Walker” is one of the bands most experimental yet wonderfully crafted songs. It’s also worth noting that a few of the members of Mastodon have appeared on the show and yes, they were killed, hahaha. Anyways here’s Mastodon’s awesome song!

 
Mastodon- White Walker:

 

B-Sides: Mastodon

mastodon-emperor-of-sand-logo-extralarge_1485563459236

Since the turn of the century, there is a band that I truly feel is the band of the 2000’s. That band is Mastodon. From the moment their album Remission was released all the way till their newest, Emperor Of Sand, Mastodon, has been the most consistent and best band of this new era. On each album they’ve been able to push themselves creatively and have made timeless and classic albums. Mastodon, doesn’t have many b-sides, though I’m sure their vault is full of great songs they didn’t use. Here are a few tracks that didn’t make their albums.

 

Deathbound (from The Hunter):

 

 
The Ruiner (from The Hunter):

 

 

White Walker (from Game Of Thrones Soundtrack:

 

 

 

Cold Dark Place EP (North Side Star, Blue Walsh, Cold Dark Place were recorded for Once More Round The Sun. Toe To Toes was recorded during Emperor Of Sand):

 

Album Review: Giraffe Tongue Orchestra- Broken Lines

packshot.jpg

I’ve waited a little bit to write about Giraffe Tongue Orchestra‘s debut album Broken Lines, to really give it a fair share of listens. After multiple listens I’ve come to the conclusion that this is more a collection of songs than anything, really good songs though. The combination of guitarists Ben Weinman of The Dillinger Escape Plan and Brent Hinds of Mastodon, makes for some sweet riffs and some very experimental moments, that you could tell they’ve been wanting to do for some time. Having former Mars Volta drummers Jon Theodore and Thomas Pridgen helps to add to the experimental aspect of the record. Each posses a style uniquely their own, and it fits with what Ben and Brent wrote. The real hero of the album is singer William DuVall. As the new front man for Alice in Chains, he isn’t very pronounced on their albums, but this band gives him a chance to really shine, and shine he does both vocally and lyrically.

The album starts off with “Adapt or Die” a very rocking song with a soaring chorus and lots of foot tapping rhythms. “Crucifixion” is a song that really hits the mark in combining the talents of Ben and Brent. William’s lyrics on this song are top notch. “No One Is Innocent” is a song that will grab you thanks to the riffs and rhythms. It almost sounds like a Jane’s Addiction song in the verses. The chorus is great and packs a real “vibe.” “Blood Moon” is a fun track. There is a sort of 80’s feel to it. Plus the video is pretty awesome. “Fragments & Ashes” is a decent song, though it’s not one of the standouts. “Back to the Light” features guest vocals from Juliette Lewis and it’s quite the rocker. This is one of those types of songs that when it’s played live, it will for sure get the crowd into a frenzy. “All We Have Is Now” is a somber “power ballad” in the vain of the 80’s but without the cheese factor. This song really has sensual melodies from William as the words flow off his velvet tongue. “Everyone Gets Everything They Really Want” is a funky jam, with a bit of swag to it, as well as giving the flow of the album a bit of a break. “Thieves and Whores” is drenched in Mars Volta rhythms and heavy riffs. Closing out the album is the title track “Broken Lines.” This song is a great summation of all the influences of Giraffe Tongue Orchestra.

All in all this is a great introduction to a project that has been in the works for a while now. I personally would love to see them be able to take the time to make a cohesive album. I really have to give it to Ben Weinman, Brent Hinds and William DuVall, they are a great team of songwriters. This is definitely a record that will captivate you at certain moments and leave you wanting more. It’s creative and full of inspiration, without taking away from their current bands. Giraffe Tongue Orchestra is here and I hope they continue to put out music.

Overall Rating: B+

Giraffe Tongue Orchestra- Broken Lines:

 

Review By: Brian Lacy