Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Mastodon Auditions for Spinal Tap

This is Spinal Tap, the movie, is a a cultural touchstone for rock and roll freaks. You know who you are. Ask the guy that sits next to you at work if he knows This is Spinal Tap. He doesn't. The movie was the perfect cocktail of insider jokes and expertly executed caricatures of rock gods and demons, all played out with the knowing cynicism that only true lovers of the art form could muster. Spinal Tap (the band) was a one album, one tour, 18 month good idea. News of an upcoming "Unwigged and Unplugged" tour is disheartening. This joke was played out over 20 years ago and Spinal Tap's refusal to go away has spawned atrocities like Tenacious D, Flight of The Conchords and now the spectacularly awful The Lonely Island, which takes a one joke viral video ("Dick in A Box") and spawns an album that's as hysterical as those SNL MacGruber skits. Which brings us to the cruelest irony - Spinal Tap has become... Spinal Tap.

But fear not, the funniest album of the year is sure to be Mastodon's "Crack The Skye", a 7 song, 50 minute heavy metal song cycle that drops March 24th. Per Billboard, here's drummer Brian Dailor synopsis of the new magnum opus:

"It's about a crippled young man who experiments with astral travel. He goes up into outer space, goes too close to the sun, gets his golden umbilical cord burned off, flies into a wormhole, is thrust into the spirit real, has conversations with spirits about the fact that he's not really dead, and they decide to help him. They put him into a divination that's being performed by an early-20th-century Russian Orthodox sect called the Klisti, which Rasputin is part of.

Knowing Rasputin is about to be murdered, they put the young boy's spirit inside of Rasputin. Rasputin goes to usurp the throne of the czar and is murdered by the Yusupovs, and the boy and Rasputin fly out of Rasputin's body up through the crack in the sky and head back. Rasputin gets him safely back into his body."

"That's the basic story," he says, "but it's all metaphors for personal sh*t."

You can not make this stuff up. Actually, yes you can. You have been warned.

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