Mastodon LeBreton Flats, Ottawa ON July 14

Mastodon LeBreton Flats, Ottawa ON July 14
Anyone concerned with Mastodon's growing appeal amongst hipsters and proletarian music critics can breathe a sigh of relief, as droves of real-deal metalheads crammed the grounds of the Ottawa Bluesfest to shout along, crowd surf and raise their collective fists.

Cramming 20 tracks into their 90-minute set, the Atlanta sludgesters tore through the entirety of the latest LP, The Hunter, with just a smattering of older material slotted in. As there was once a time when Brent Hinds and Bill Kelliher focused intently on their guitar playing, the duo came off nothing short than confident and performance-minded during early material like "March of the Fire Ants" and "Aqua Dementia." But it was Troy Sanders who kept heads banging and mosh pits overflowing as the vocalist attacked his bass with a fury that came off just as vicious as it did, ahem, charming.

Keeping the energy high, fiery and unrelenting, Mastodon found it more important and satisfying to keep sonically bashing the fervent crowd over their heads than to stop and see "how y'all doing tonight?"