5 Live Mastodon Videos You Need to Watch

Awesome rare footage from the modern metal masters.

Ultimate Guitar
5 Live Mastodon Videos You Need to Watch

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, you’re likely aware that the release of new Mastodon album "Emperor of Sand" is a mere month away. We here at Ultimate Guitar are pretty psyched.

To get ourselves - and you - in the mood for the oncoming onslaught of metal mastery, we’ve been trawling through the YouTube archives to bring you a selection of some of the finest live footage of the band. You can check out five complete shows below, from the very beginnings of their career onwards. So, what are you waiting for? Fullscreen that shit and play it fucking loud!

Mastodon, Cow Haus, Tallahassee, Florida, 28th May 2000

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Mastodon is at their most embryonic here in this clip filmed just four months after they formed. It’s also a rare example of footage featuring original vocalist Eric Saner is at the helm, his exit from the band imminent at this point. The music is raw, uncompromising and brutally performed, with the young and hungry band playing like there’s no tomorrow.

The Creepy Cawl, St Louis, 21st May 2001

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Some awesome early pro-shot footage here from the guys at Leper’s TV, featuring the now four-piece band on tour in support of their debut EP. “The middle act” in “some random midwest show,” there are about as many people in the audience as there are on stage. Nonetheless, the performance is a powerhouse, and even features a rare-run-through of the blistering “Trilobite” from the band’s 2002 Remission album.

Mastodon, Scala, London, UK, 12th May 2005

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Excellently shot from the balcony of London’s Scala Theater, this show is heavy on cuts from the band’s breakout album, Leviathan, which was released the year earlier. Along with some pretty gnarly sounding Brent Hinds vocals, it also features the live debut of the monolithic “Circle of Cysquatch” from the as-then-unreleased Blood Mountain record.

Scion Festival, Atlanta, Georgia, 28th February 2009

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Another multi-camera offering, this time from the band’s hometown show at the 2009 Scion Festival. A mega setlist, heavy on Leviathan and Blood Mountain tracks, this show is also notable for featuring debut performances of “Oblivion,” “Divinations,” and “Crack The Skye” from the Crack The Skye album, still two months away from release at this point. And, as if that wasn’t enough, Scott Kelly from Neurosis – a noted influence on Mastodon – joins the band for the final three tracks.

Pinkpop Festival, 27th May 2012

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A TV broadcast from 2012’s Pinkpop Festival sees Mastodon touring behind the recently released The Hunter with a setlist heavy on tracks from that album. Opening with the beastly “Dry Bone Valley,” it’s a great showcase for plenty of latter-day Mastodon bangers as well as some tasty vocals from drummer Brann Dailor. There’s also something quite satisfying about watching the band playing to a festival crowd of tens of thousands, contrasting the 5 people in attendance at the Creepy Crawl some ten years earlier.

19 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I'm sure that in the next generations, these guys will be seen as legends, and being able to enjoy them while I'm still young (relatively)... makes me feel that I wasn't born in such a wrong era after all.
    This is why I can't stand people who think there's no great rock/metal being made anymore. There are tons of great contemporary bands churning out what might one day be classic music, but most people are just so stuck looking at the past that they miss the present.
    Wrong. Not many people think of it this way, as far as i know. There is shit ton of good and praised metal acts nowadays. There isnt anymore pop music that will ever get (or deserve) that "legendary" status. This is what people talk about considering todays music.
    You must be new here if you haven't seen a Mustaine/Grohl-related article bemoaning the state of rock music and the comments sections to match. Also, you're crazy if you don't think Bruno Mars, Pharell and The Weeknd (to name a few recent examples) aren't making pop music that will be considered classic in the future. There's great music all around, but haters (as always) are gonna hate.
    The vocals are really bad live.
    I would also give them a pass (even though they are professional musicians and we should always be expecting a great performance) simply for the fact that all four of them are playing at an insanely high level of technicality while singing so expecting a perfect performance is pretty far fetched when they are focusing on so much at once.
    They have always polished the vocals up in the studio, and Im totally fine with that. None of these guys are world class singers, and Im also totally fine with that. They all sing which is cool, it gives the sound alot of variety and their own unique sound
    The main culprit is Hinds though. He sometimes just doesn't seem to give a shit about the vocals. At least Sanders and Dailor try, even if they're not perfect.
    I can sympathise, but it almost never carries well live in these videos. When you're at the gig, it washes over you and it's as much the prowess as the tone; if they released a properly produced and balanced live DVD (have they?) then I think you'd get a better impression.
    They have released a live DVD a few years ago, but the production wasn't very polished. As a result, the instrumentals were great and the vocals kind of lackluster. I personally think it's a commendable way of doing a live DVD, because you're not selling a polished image of them, but the way they actually sound live.
    Yeah, that's fair, - pros and cons. I don't mind the super-polish sometimes; good to have the option if they do two.
    I think its more a case of the recordings of the live vocals being bad. I've seen them twice and the vocals were just fine.
    I'm requesting your wisdom and presence to come to a popular pub here in Argentina (most precisely in Buenos Aires) because one night they made an special with mastodon and tool and most people agreed that "mastodon is gay", not sure if they are tool fanboys or they just pretend they know everything of progressive metal by listening to tool. Honestly I stopped listening to tool when I started listening to opeth, meshuggah and mastodon of course.
    Funny thing is that l just cant get into Tool... and I tried to "like them" because all of the hype that surrounds the band but it's like I have some type of attention defficit towards tool's music, bring in the downvotes but... it sound boring to me. Mastodon on the other hand, I enjoy listening to pretty much everything they do.
    Missing Download 2007 where Brent sounded especially cat in heat being strangledy. You'll never hear March of the Fire Ants the same way again.
    I had the chance to seem them live, they were touring before the release of OMRTS. It was amazing. Yeah, the vocals are not as good as they are in the studio records, but god, it was awesome. The sound, the playing, the atmosphere, the crowd. Everything was perfect. I even got one of Billy's pick