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:
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.
Since the turn of the century, Mastodon have blazed their own trail and cemented themselves in rock music as one of the greats. Every album of theirs gets better and better. That’s pretty hard to do these days but, the gents in Mastodon have found the way to not just do that but also to make albums cool again. All their albums, even the somewhat disappointing The Hunter, have something special about them. Not to mention that all their albums have amazing closing songs. Check them out below and then I recommend listening to all their albums!
Elephant Man (from Remission):
Joseph Merrick (from Leviathan):
Pendulous Skin (from Blood Mountain):
The Last Baron (from Crack The Skye):
The Sparrow (from The Hunter):
Diamond In The Witch House feat- Scott Kelly of Neurosis (from Once More Round The Sun):
I’ve been a huge Mastodon fan since I heard Remission in 2002. They have been one of the few bands that has been able to create just what they want. There are some people that are not into their evolution, but if you really delve into their catalog you’ll be able to see how great they really are! This is the order of their albums from not the best to the best.
There are certain bands that are a must see live. The albums they create have the ability to transcend reality and their live shows take that reality even further. Mastodon have been doing just that for me since I saw them back when their album Remission was released. Every album they upped their game and pushed the limits of what they can do in the studio and in a live setting. May 2nd was no different. Mastodon wasted no time during their 90 minute set to deliver one of the strongest live shows they’ve done since Crack The Skye was released. Their 17 song set was highlighted by the inclusion of songs such as opening with “Hearts Alive,” “Crusher Destroyer,” “Naked Burn,” “Aqua Dementia,” and “Oblivion.” The two new songs they played “Chimes At Midnight” and “High Road” sounded great, especially “High Road.” Instead of banter between songs, they let the music do the talking. The light show they has while they played had a bit of a psychedelic vibe to it and it matched perfectly with their set. Vocally, their past shows have been underwhelming, but it seems that with the proper vocal training, they have managed to pull off these songs in a much better light.
Also playing this fine evening was Gojira. Their loud bombastic assault has been talked about for years. As a live band they have the ability to steal the show away from the headliner (recently on their tour with Slayer, they did just that). Gojira’s set went by fast but was a great and fulfilled all that the mid opener slot is meant to be. Certain tracks played like “The Heaviest Matter Of The Universe,” “Oroborus,” and “Vacuity” got the crowd banging their heads. Their sound from album to live sounds identical, and all in a good way. Opening the entire show was Kvelertak. They are the perfect opening energy type band. Armed with three guitars and vocals only sung in their native Norwegian language, it’s hard not to be captivated by them.
Mastodon truly owned the night. The diverse set list that was played really balanced out a great evening. Their new album Once More Round The Sun comes out in June. Club Nokia on the other hand isn’t the greatest place to see a show. The layout and design puts a bit of a hinderance on viewing and listening. But I refused to let that get in the way of enjoying the show.
When creating an album, a lot of bands have a thought in their mind while writing that certain songs would sound great if they could get someone from one of their main influences to sing on that song. Mastodon has done that constantly. One of their big influences is Neurosis and they have managed to get Scott Kelly to sing on 5 of their albums and songs (Leviathan, Blood Mountain, Crack The Skye, The Hunter, Once More Round The Sun, and Emperor Of Sand. Scott’s vocals are very prominent in the mix and it fits so well with the music that the guys in Mastodon have created. It seems as though Scott is the unofficial fifth member of the band. Perhaps one day Scott will just do an entire album with Mastodon. Below are the songs in which they have collaborated on. Enjoy!!!
Aqua Dementia from Leviathan:
Crystal Skull from Blood Mountain:
Crack The Skye from Crack The Skye:
Spectrelight from The Hunter:
Diamond In The Witch House from Once More Round The Sun: