Mastodon Guitarist Talks New Song: 'I Wrote It in My Sober Time on James Hetfield ESP'

Track titled "High Road" also might be the new album's first single, guitarist Bill Kelliher explains.

Ultimate Guitar

As the new Mastodon studio record is cooking up for release, guitarist Bill Kelliher shared a few fresh tidbits recording the new material, revealing title and details of one of the tracks for the first time.

As Kelliher told Artist Direct, the song is titled "High Road" and is even one of his all-time Mastodon favorites at the moment. "I wrote the music," he said. "The lyrics were written by Brann Dailor. I think it's going to be a single. It was a riff I wrote in my sober time. I was feeling really good about it.

"I actually wrote it on a James Hetfield model ESP," Bill continued. "It's the 'Snake Bite' guitar. I was sitting in my hotel room in Luxembourg because we had a couple of days off there. It's a very simple, easy, and heavy riff. I didn't think it would catch on with anybody else, but Brann was like, 'I hear some really cool vocals there!'"

Further detailing the tune, the guitarist added, "It just blossomed into this huge six-minute song with cool leads. They're not solos, but leads in the middle of the song I put together my song. It's something I worked really hard on. It's new and fresh. I'm excited for it to come out and have other people hear it and let me know what they think."

Dubbed "a masterpiece" by Kelliher, "The Hunter" follow-up is about 70 percent complete at the moment. Drummer Brann Dailor described the record as a "bizarre" one, telling Loudwire that "fans will be absolutely horrified or absolutely loving it."

Mastodon are set to kick off their US tour with Gojira and Kveletrak on April 28 in Seattle, Washington. Details and ticket info here.

16 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I can't wait for this. Mastodon purists will probably shit a log again but these guys are incapable of making a bad album, I'm sure of it!
    I don't get how anyone could be a purist of a band that literally says they'll never do the same thing twice, if it comes out and it doesn't sound like CTS (which it won't) people can't really complain seen as they've pretty much said it won't. Limiting themselves to only wanting one style from this band is just shooting themselves in the foot.
    To be fair, i bet they could make a bad album. If they really tried you know. .. But then again someone would probably call it art, and it'd be a masterpiece.
    This sounds really cool! Definitely looking forward to this and can't wait to hear it
    One of the few groups that can say their album is a masterpiece.... And I believe them.
    Did ESP pay you for that headline?
    Are you kidding me? I am absolutely disgusted with your accusation, which I read on my new trusty iPad.
    I agree! When I read this on my award winning HTC One I was disappointed to see such an insult.
    I agree as well and, as such, up-vote your comment on my incredible Toshiba Satellite!