Mastodon Unleash Twisted Images, Pounding Rock on Tour

October 5th, 2009 by Jonathan Zwickel Leave a reply »

Photograph by Jimmy Hubbard

With Saturday night’s Seattle performance, the second of their latest assault on the U.S., Mastodon furthered their claim as kings of wormhole-tearing, time-traveling meta-metal. The Atlanta quartet devoted most of their 70-minute set to Crack the Skye, their recent, mainstream-courting opus, then reeled back through their catalog. Behind them was the sort of big-budget backdrop they’ve always deserved: a drive-in-wide digital video screen lit with vintage black-and-white hellspliotation footage, animated mandalas and various filmic versions of Rasputin’s bearded torment. The combination of ear-crushing sonics and twisted imagery was a sensory steamroller that drove the swirling, sweaty mass of moshers and crowd surfers center-floor. Several shoes and hoodies went flying in the melee.

Check out photos of Mastodon.

Every Mastodon show is a window into their influences, from galloping Metallica-like aggression to ZZ Top’s bluesy grind to the eerie, Ozzy-esque wailing of singers Brent Hinds and Troy Sanders. On Saturday, Pink Floyd was the touchstone, albeit a Floyd pumped near bursting with testosterone and adrenaline, mind-bending through sheer abusive volume. The bombastic psychedelia was most evident during the 13-minute, multi-movement odyssey “The Last Baron.” Throughout, Hinds wielded a Lucite Flying V, his solos during balanced between technique and raw aggression. During the Crack the Skye portion of the set, a keyboardist added gothic organ and regal piano.

Thanks to his furious leads (and face tats), Hinds seemed Mastodon’s obvious point man, but really drummer Brann Dailor ran the stage. Dailor’s a rock & roll athlete, conditioned for power and endurance, one of modern rock’s most gifted drummers. His rhythms power Mastodon’s stampede. He held ba...

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


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