Mastodon - Captured Live At The Georgia Aquarium 15.07.2021
Mastodon – Live At The Georgia Aquarium 15th July 2021
Naked Burn (First time live since July 18, 2014)
Asleep in the Deep
Skelton of Splendor (World Premiere)
The Sparrow (First time live since July 19, 2014)
Elephant Man (Live debut)
Pendulous Skin (Live debut).
When Mastodon first announced they were going to be doing a live acoustic streamed concert from the world-renowned Georgia Aquarium this was going to be something special.
Mastodon are known for being extremely heavy and having songs that shift through different movements so how was this going to work in an acoustic setting? Instead of playing a straight up set the mastodudes have opted for something different (apart from the obvious of huge fucking Whale Sharks and fish behind them) by breaking the concert up into segments and talking about the next song they are going to play. Given the amount of people Mastodon have had close to them die over the years this set features as tributes to some of those people and it makes the songs seem all the more powerful when you’ve heard a story behind the song.
The songs are stripped back and it’s interesting to hear how some of the songs sound without all the bells and whistles so to speak of the studio. These new renditions really add a new dimension to these songs and even though this is not “totally acoustic” due to some slight overdriven electric guitar for the solos it works brilliantly. Mastodon really tried something different with this set and really pulled out some deep cuts that they’ve never played before. Some of these songs that have never been played before are tributes to people who have passed away so in a way this is a tribute concert. The boys debut a brand new song “Skelton of Splendor” written about the passing of their long term friend and manager Nick John. It’s clear to see in the talk before the song that Mastodon are still in pain over the passing of their friend and that he can’t be there to see them pull this show off (it’s an emotional moment for sure and it really sets up what’s to come).
Troy Sanders has always been the growly/shouty vocalist in Mastodon and over the years/albums his vocals have improved massively. On 'Skelton of Splendor' Troy reaches new levels of singing in a range he previously hasn’t used and the emotion on this song hits hard (I can’t wait to hear the studio version of this).
Visually this concert is stunning as there is an amazing blend of the band playing with smooth transitions from one member to the next whilst a rather interesting back drop of fishes’ swim behind them. The lighting is very subtle and adds to the mood nicely, as the set progress’s we see overlays of some of the more popular residents of the Aquarium playing in front of the band which take things to another level and reminded me at times of Pink Floyd’s Live in Pompeii.
This concert is only available to stream 72 hours and whether this appears again in the future remains to be seen. Given Mastodon’s love of releasing things for Black Friday and Record Store Day I would not be in the slightest bit surprised to see this set appear on vinyl in the future. So how the hell do I rate this streaming concert? – I don’t know that this really feels like a concert as such because let’s face it this isn’t a concert, it’s an audio/visual masterpiece. If you missed out on this then you really did miss something special that makes this standout so much from all the other streamed performances of recent times.
Five stars out of five seems an unfair reflection of how good this whole spectacle really is.
Review - Aleutia Shannon