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Review: Mastodon w/ Eagles of Death Metal at ROMT

by David Gimpel

If you are one of those who thinks Rock is dead, then this tour with heavy metal greats Mastodon would make you a believer it’s very much alive. Mastodon headline this great tour with support from Eagles of Death Metal and Russian Circles. They landed Tuesday night at Royal Oak Music Theatre to a very rowdy, hot and sweaty sold out crowd.

Russian Circles kicked the show off with their moody instrumental post rock. Their brief 30 minute set left a great impression to those who came early to check them out. Do not let the word “instrumental” fool you, if they did not have the chops, they would not be on this tour.

Eagles of Death Metal were up next, and they had the crowd’s attention right from the start with the first notes of “I Only Want You”. The crowd noticed a familiar face on stage: Mastodon’s Brent Hinds playing lead guitar. Bouncing guitar solos between the EOD’s band leader Jesse Hughes and guitarist Darlin’ Dave was a lot of fun to witness. They ended the first song with a big hug between Jesse and Brent, a very sentimental moment of the show.

The Eagles of Death Metal, from that moment on, were out to prove you can still “shake your dick” to rock n’ roll. The crowd seemed to obey Jesse Hughes’s rock n’ roll sermon as the whole venue was getting down to the grooves. They provided the night’s only cover, a wonderful rendition of “Moonage Daydream” by David Bowie.

Now, it was Mastodon’s turn to take the stage with the chimes of “Sultan’s Curse” off of the band’s new album Emperor Of Sand.  This immediately kicked things into high gear without ever letting their foot off the gas, driving through highlights in their entire discography. Mastodon seems to get better with each tour. The chemistry is an incredible thing to witness, each band member taking over solos, riffs and singing duties. But, not one of them was ever showboating and that, to me, is what separates Mastodon from their peers. Behind the band was a stellar production that added more depth to the performance. Eight screens with unique imagery to each song with visuals Mastodon fans love: psychedelic colors, demons and dragons. The lights were beaming to the pulse of the drums and made the theatre look fantastic.

The crowd was electric Tuesday with an impressive mosh pit and movement all over the whole main floor, considering the venue felt like an oven. Mastodon fed off that energy, every song seemed to up the tempo. They ended the set with some of the band’s heaviest tracks. The crowd still had enough in the tank after the band’s two-hour long set for one last song, “March Of The Fire Ants,” off of the band’s debut album, Remission. After the song, the band’s drummer/singer Brann Dailor thanked the crowd for coming out and applauded the energy of everyone as the show was a scorcher.

PHOTO ALBUM: MASTODON

PHOTO ALBUM: EAGLES OF DEATH METAL

Setlists

MASTODON
Sultan’s Curse
Divinations
The Wolf Is Loose
Crystal Skull
Ancient Kingdom
Bladecatcher
Black Tongue
Colony Of Birchmen
Ember City
Megalodon
Andromeda
Oblivion
Show Yourself
Precious Stone
Roots Remain
Chimes At Midnight
Steambreather
Mother Puncher
Circle Of Cysquatch
March Of The Fire Ants

EAGLES OF DEATH METAL
I Only Want You (w/ Brent Hinds of Mastodon)
Don’t Speak (I came To Make A Bang)
Complexity
Whorehoppin’
Silverlake
Flames Go Higher
Moonage Daydream (David Bowie cover)
I Want You So Hard
Speaking In Tongues

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