(Photo courtesy of Blabbermouth.net)
If you’re looking for a good excuse to have your eardrums blown out, you’d be a complete bozo not to check out heavy metallers, Mastadon at the 9:30 Club tonight. Perhaps most well-known for their sludgy, alternative and occasionally stoner riffs, Mastodon is a far more complex and innovative beast. Over their now fourteen-year lifespan, the Atlanta-based quartet has released five concept albums, most notably, Leviathan (2005) — loosely based on Herman Melville’s, “Moby Dick,” — which produced massive hits, “Iron Tusk,” “I am Ahab” and “Seabeast.” You may be asking yourself: How do you convey a heavy metal album based on a literary classic? For starters, with exquisite cover art. The Hokusai-inspired massive and demonic whale capsizing the fiery ship — it’s a true masterpiece. But let’s not forget about later iterations such as Blood Mountain, which first broke them into the mainstream with an appearance on “Conan O’Brien,” and the song, “Colony of Birchmen,” which was featured on the ever popular, “Rock Band 2.” Or how about the stripped down, bare bones metalish, The Hunter, released in 2011? Their single, “Curl of the Burl,” boasted a very Sabbath-esque chorus over top layers and layers of sludgy guitar riffs that left your head spinning. Mastodon crosses into unfamiliar territories with progressive melodies and complex, oft-times experimental guitar/drum riffs—an unlikely duo that serves as the driving force of the band—all while maintaining the aggression, energy and catchiness of an ass-kicking heavy metal group.
And what of the live show?
“Mastodon’s strength lies in playing the angles; they’re progressive but accessible, hard to pin down yet instantly recognizable, hooky without sacrificing aggression, “literary” without getting too nerdy,” said Paul Thompson, a Pitchfork writer on the band’s live performance at Brixton in 2012.
That’s a pretty accurate description, though it’s not too hard to envision a live show by a metal band whose biggest influences are Pantera, Metallic and Slayer (i.e., you probably want to make sure you’ve said goodbye to your loved ones).
The band will be releasing their sixth studio album, Once More Round the Sun later this year.
Definitely do not miss out on the opportunity to see Mastodon at the 9:30 Club TONIGHT! Doors at 6:30 p.m.