Mastodon Frontman Talks New Album: 'We're Doing This for Ourselves and by Ourselves'

New record tentatively due in early 2014, as the band gets "completely absorbed" in new material.

Ultimate Guitar

Atlanta-based metallers Mastodon are getting their groove on for the upcoming, still-unnamed new record, tentatively due in early 2014. At the moment, the group seems to be tighter that ever and ready to deliver.

Bassist/singer Troy Sanders has decided to reveal some of the new info regarding "The Hunter" follow-up, and judging by his words, the band is practicing every single day and obsessively soaking up every new demo recording.

When asked by Artist Direct on whether the new material continues in the same direction as the band's previous effort, Sanders replied: "To a degree, I'm going to say it's picking up where we left off. It's kind of an open game or a clean slate.

"Every single day I go to band practice, I feel like I'm going to a chef's table for a food tasting because there's an element of the unknown. I'm fascinated with that. Either Chef Brent or Chef Bill will present a tasty riff dish of the day and we all lock in and go for it. Nothing that is out of the box will be turned away.

"We're doing this for ourselves and by ourselves. We're creating delicious sandwiches every day at band practice. [laughs]"

Afrer wrapping up the kitchen talk, the singer switched to more specific recording details regarding the group's working routine.

"Per usual, in the writing process, I'm completely absorbed in Mastodon material. I'm a late bloomer, and it takes me a while to grasp a lot of things in life, and Mastodon material is one of them," the frontman said. "I'll listen to a demo of a particular song over and over until I can possibly find an interesting vocal melody line or lyrics that'll fit a certain part. I immerse myself one-hundred percent in our riff writing. I'm also enjoying my home time as we're about to leave for the entire summer. I'm trying to find a healthy balance of home and tour life.

"We've got the skeletons of enough songs for an entire album. We're thinking of vocal ideas and putting together as much rough demos as we can before we go overseas so we can listen to everything over the summer. Then, when we return from the tour, we'll know what we want to keep, delete, and add."

The band has recently reported being "very busy" with the new release, so things really seem to be cooking up well in the Mastodon kitchen.

The groups previous release, "The Hunter", saw its release back in September 2011 via Reprise/Roadrunner Records. With just over 75,000 copies shipped in the US, it debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard 200 chart.

52 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Can't wait for the new album. All the food metaphors made me think of this song and video. Kind of Related.
    I wish they'd release this on an album or something. Or at the very least put this out on a 7" or something haha.
    Mastodon Frontman? Really? I mean he's at the front but y'no... Still. New Mastodon album, fantastic
    Well, he was the frontman for a good while, it's only with Blood Mountain that Brent started coming more to the fore with vocals, and it grew from there.
    still a fairly even split of vocal duties. troy sang a lot on the hunter.
    Some parts Brent won't get back to his MIC fast enough, so Troy will cover Love seeing these guys live, it's truly like they are all brothers.
    Yeah but... I mean even a person who's just the vocalist/guitarist, unless they're solely a singer I find the term Frontman a bit... insulting. Frontman to me is the person who get's the crowd going... Mastodon don't do that aha. Dunno. Just a personal thing perhaps
    I don't know why you're being downvoted - I agree with you. When I picture Mastodon, I don't just see Troy as the face of the band; there's no main vocalist. Brann also does his share of the vocals, and there are songs where Troy doesn't sing at all.
    nonsense. they all seemed exciting enough on stage for me. I did think Troy was the main singer though...heh
    The Hunter was 'simpler' sounding than previous albums but I loved it just the same as the other albums. Every single one of Mastodon's albums have been stellar and this one's gonna be no different!
    Righteous itch
    I think half the reason that I have a lot of respect for this band, is that they play music because they ****ing love it. You can see it in their shows and the way they talk bout it in interviews. They make the music THEY want to make, which is kind of an unique trait for a band in this age. Would I like them to make another Blood Mountain album? Yes. Would I care if they made a Lounge Jazz album? Fuck no. (Quite frankly, if I walked into a hotel lounge and heard mastodon on the speakers, or in suits playing in the corner, I would probably pass out from joy).
    Haha this is actually completely true, it's so awesome to see the way they present themselves, you can just tell that they love what they do and that's just inspiring. Mastodon is legendary in my eyes.
    Really looking forward to see what they will produce. Personally I'am hoping for a mix of Leviathan and Crack the Sky. Big eerie sounding licks with powerful riffs that can crush skulls.
    Mastodon pretty much always delivers. Even The Hunter had some truly killer moments, despite it being the album of theirs I like the least. I have no doubt they'll put out something great.
    A new album? I only just found out they made a new one in 2011... Man I'm out of the loop. I wasn't massively into Cracke the Skye (deed eye mispel eet corektlee?) and Blood Mountain kind of got boring after a while. I guess no matter how much I want to fit in with my friends, I'm just not that big of a Mastodon fan. Even saw them live at Sonisphere, didn't do a thing for me. Part of me wants to like Mastodon, it's just not happening.
    Hunter was so boring. Huge step backwards. More Leviathan/Remission please.
    I agree with you Anjohl. While there was nothing absolutely wrong with the album, it wasn't as brutal or progressive as their previous albums. Very "hear it on the radio"-ish. Hopefully, this won't be the "Metallica's Black Album" of their careers and this album will be more of a Crack the Skye or even a Leviathan that we've come to know and love.
    maybe they want to get heard on the radio, you know nothing wrong with that.
    They don't, all they care about is making music that they themselves can enjoy and love, they've said it millions of times. If they love the music they make than people seem to get it. That's where their fame is coming from, from the amount of love they put in each record and it's a very unique and usual thing these days.
    I don't think that the problem is that their sound is changing it's that you listened to them for a certain sound and you aren't willing to change with them. You aren't a fan of Mastodon, you are a fan of 2 albums mastodon made, and there is nothing wrong with that. Mastodon greatly reminds me of Testament in this regard. Each record sounds unique and different, each record has the whole bands soul poured into it. Many people only like certain albums these bands make, personally i think it keeps the sound refreshing so that i don't get bored listening to the same stuff over and over.
    I couldn't agree more: Especially the opening track "Black Tongue". The sinister riff at the beginning with the out of control thundering drums definitely had me snoring right off the bat... SOOOO BORING!
    I am so excited for this album it's unreal! True musicians making real music!
    The Hunter is one of the most sickeningly over-produced albums I've ever heard, also I've seen them a few times and they bored me to tears. That said they have a couple of good tracks here and there so I'll definitely check it out.
    lol, what? Overproduced? Hahaha. I do hope that "The Hunter" isn't the only album you've heard of theirs, btw. Their other albums are basically a natural progression to that album.
    To everyone talking shit on The Hunter... I think making a record as deep, dark and complex as Crack the Skye took a bit of a toll on the band. When it came time to record their next album they just needed to unwind a little and make a more lighthearted, fun record with some tasty jams instead of 10 minute prog epics about Rasputin and Bran's sister's suicide. I think The Hunter was a breath of fresh air for the band as well as the fans and I am pumped as hell for the new album. And judging by the amount of time they are practicing and preparing together I expect this will be a return to prog form for them, unlike The Hunter where they went into the studio with hardly any material prepared.