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#songoftheday / REVIEW: MASTODON: “HIGH ROAD”

To each, his own, they say.  Meaning, of course, that each of us has our own tastes.  But, occasionally,  an artist comes along that almost everyone likes.  Take Nirvana and Metallica, for example.  Or Nine Inch Nails.  There are not many naysayers when it comes to these artists.  Ditto for Hendrix and Zeppelin.  Well, Mastodon fall into that rare category of spectacular artists who manage to capture everyone’s full attention and somehow reward them.  Different people might like them for different reasons, but it seems everyone likes Mastodon.  And we fall into that category ourselves.

Personally, I like Mastodon for a few reasons, all of which “High Road,” their new single, makes clear.  For starters, I love how they have a pulverizing, grinding, doom metal vibe but are more uptempo than your average doom metal.  They’re like doom metal on amphetamines.  Secondsly, I love how the vocals are heavy and serious without venturing into the death metal territory.  I like death metal, as you know, but…  Sometimes it’s nice to hear something heavy with clean and perfectly understandable vocals.  Finally, I love how they manage to be melodic while accomplishing everything I’ve stated above.  Plenty of bands could pull off one or two of these things.  But all of them?  I can’t say that there are many artists that talented.  “You take the high road down / I’ll take the ground below,” goes the mesmerizing, melodious chorus.  Sounds like a plan to us!

FROM THE PRESS RELEASE:

Mastodon band members had this to say about the new song:

 

“I wrote that on a day off while we were on tour in Luxembourg. I was sitting in this rainy city on a Sunday, and nothing was open. I felt like I needed to write something to reflect how I was feeling. I started banging on a guitar. I was thinking Neurosis and The Melvins low-tuned with a little more pop sensibility for the chorus.” — Bill Kelliher

 

“You can headbang to that one for days. I love the simplicity of it. Lyrically, it’s an angry number where you want to see someone destroyed. It’s heavy-handed in that sense, but it’s the fantasy I felt at the time.” — Brann Dailor

Soundcloud info:

Download the new single, “High Road” from Mastodon’s upcoming album on iTunes now: smarturl.it/highroad

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Written by

Paris365

An entertainment journalist for 20 years, Michael McCarthy was a columnist and contributing editor for the magazines Lollipop and LiveWire. He co-created and wrote for Cinezine, one of the '90's most popular movie E-zines. The only time he's not listening to music is when he's watching television shows and movies or reading, usually music magazines.

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