With Mastodon taking Gojira and Kvelertak on the road with them starting in late April, ARTISTDirect lined up members of all three bands to talk about touring together. Mastodon’s Bill Kelliher, Gojira’s Joe Duplantier and Kvelertak’s Erlend Hjelvik are psyched to be playing with each other, but when it comes to which of their musical idols they’ve gotten to meet with and/or tour, all three are in awe of Metallica. Kelliher has a meet cute story about the first time he got to meet them:
I walked over, and Kirk was like, “Hey dude! I want to meet you. Where’s your band? I can’t wait to see you guys!” I thought, “Holy shit! You want to meet me? Fuck, I’ve wanted to meet you since I was ten!” I got a picture with him. James Hetfield was walking around. He was trying to use his phone. He had the same phone I did, and I walked up to him. It was one of those moments where you walk up to somebody you want to meet like a hot girl and right as you’re about to say something she turns her head and walks the other way [Laughs]. It was like, “Shit, I missed my calling to talk to him!” I kept doing that. I finally walked right up to him, while he was on his phone. I said, “Are you having trouble with your phone?” He said, “Yeah, I can’t figure out how to use this!” I said, “Let me see. I’ve got the same phone, and I think you have to dial this number and put the country code in”. We started talking that way. Then, I was like, “By the way, thanks for teaching me how to play guitar!” He was like, “Oh, how did I do that?” I said, “Oh, I play in Mastodon, and I’ve been listening to Metallica since I was a kid. That’s how I learned how to play guitar. I never took lessons. I just put your records on and listened. I emulated what you were doing. Thanks!
Duplantier and Hjelvik have similar stories about Metallica and how they initially met them because the bands were fans of their music. It’s what led to Mastodon and Gojira being hand picked by the band to open for them. And while talking about new music, Kelliher repeated a theme that Brann Dailor told Spin last week that Mastodon might be rethinking the way they release music:
Every time you write a record, it’s new, fresh, and exciting. Then, you tour on it for a year-and-a-half. Two years go by, and you haven’t written anything new. It gets stale. You get to a place where you plateau. You don’t really get any bigger or better. I always want to just write a couple of songs and put out little mini-albums in between. Times are changing. People don’t have the attention span they used to. Now that we’re putting out a whole brand new record, it’s a new touring cycle. It’s a new chapter in the Mastodon world and catalog.
While Kelliher’s desire to put out mini-albums and Dailor’s thought of releasing an EP as a companion piece to the sixth album doesn’t mean that Mastodon are about to break from their 12-year tradition of releasing albums and touring behind them. However, the industry has changed pretty significantly in that time, and if their management and label are down with that, it could be kind of cool to have some sporadic releases from them.
Here are the tour dates:
4/28 Seattle, WA @ Showbox Sodo
4/29 Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater
5/01 Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater
5/02 Los Angeles, CA @ Nokia Theater
5/03 Las Vegas, NV @ House of Blues
5/04 Salt Lake City, UT @ The Depot
5/05 Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre
5/07 Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue
5/08 Chicago, IL @ The Riviera Theater
5/09 Pittsburgh, PA @Stage AE
5/10 Toronto, ON @ Sound Academy
5/12 Buffalo, NY @ The Town Ballroom
5/13 Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
5/15 New York, NY @ Terminal 5
5/16 Boston, MA @ The Palladium
5/17 Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory
5/18 Columbus, OH @ Rock on the Range