MASTODON Drummer Brann Dailor Ranks The Band's Albums From His Least To Most Favorite
Mastodon is currently wrapping up a fall tour after a very busy and successful year, on the heels of their excellent new release, Emperor Of Sand, and the quick EP follow-up, Cold Dark Place. Drummer Brann Dailor spoke to Noisey, who asked him to rank the band's discography from his least to most favorite. It's interesting to see the approach Brann takes here.
Perhaps most shocking to some fans is how low The Hunter appears on the list:
- Call Of The Mastodon (2006)
- The Hunter (2011)
- Remission (2002)
- Once More ‘Round The Sun (2014)
- Emperor Of Sand (2017)
- Blood Mountain (2006)
- Leviathan (2004)
- Crack The Skye (2009)
Call Of The Mastodon barely counts as it was a compilation of early Mastodon songs, so you can see how it would rank so low. But The Hunter was a big release for Mastodon, and has one of my all-time favorite Mastodon songs on there, "All The Heavy Lifting." So why did Brann rank The Hunter so low?
“It was tough. It was just hard to concentrate with that record, to be honest with you. It was right when we started really getting into writing for that record, Bill told us he was going to leave and go to rehab. And Brent‘s brother had just died. And so the state of things, it wasn’t really that great, personally. Brent was not in a great spot, mentally.
So the mood was heavy to begin with. To get through that whole time period, we had to keep things, I guess, as light as possible in the practice space. So with a lot of the songs we decided to forgo the concept album. It was almost a backlash against ourselves. We just had done about two years of touring, ‘Crack the Skye‘ and very involved, proggy song structures and really dense writing. And so we just didn’t dig a lot deeper past certain songs.
With a song like ‘Blasteroid,’ we kind of put it all together and it was fun to write and it was fun to play, and we said, ‘That’s it. We’re not going to go any further with that song. That one’s done. Next song… OK, that one’s done.’ So we tried to not go down any crazy wormholes and get frustrated in the practice space because mentally it just wasn’t possible, especially for Brent. We needed it to be a happier place. I still love that record and I could put it at number one if it needed to be.”
As for the other rankings, it makes sense that Brann holds Leviathan in such high regard, as that was the album that broke the band through. Brann personally has a huge connection to Crack The Skye , as it was a concept album about his sister, so it's clear to see why he ranks that one #1. I also admire that he fairly placed the band's new album, as opposed to making it #1 the way most artists do, which is not to knock other artists that do that.
View his reflections on each album and why he ranked them the way he did over at Noisey.