Masto MH Cover

Where the Hell Have I Been?

I’ve been a bad, bad boy. I should be blogging the shit out of this every day but it’s been a hectic past month. And by “hectic,” I mean “periods of manic productivity spaced between sprawling interludes of leisure.” But yeah, I’m back to it this week.

masto promo

Photo Credit: Jimmy Hubbard

But for starters, please, please please pick up a copy of the new Metal Hammer, as they asked me to write the cover story on Mastodon. It’s an intense story- during the recording of their new album, Emperor Of Sand, each of the four guys in the band were thrown into their own unbelievably punishing emotional saga; two of the guys saw loved ones receive cancer diagnoses, one’s mother fell ill and the third smashed his motorcycle and ended up in the hospital with a broken leg. To hear each of these guys recount what it was like to endure their personal struggles and to then walk into the rehearsal room where everybody else was struggling made for a unique recording experience, though it ultimately yielded one of the best albums I’ve heard in ages.

Emperor Of Sand tells the story of a guy in ancient Egypt who receives the Sultan’s Curse (the first track on the album), and who then flees into the desert to escape. The entire story is a metaphor for cancer and each track casts the Emperor’s story as a mirror to their own personal challenges. The guys could not have been more gracious and forthcoming in the interviews and I think/hope their honesty and vulnerability come through in the feature.

So check out the story and more importantly, check out the album, Emperor Of Sand. You will not be disappointed.Yum