REVIEW: Mastodon – “White Walker” (2016 picture disc single)

MASTODON – “White Walker” (2016 Warner 10″ picture disc single)

Disclaimer: I’ve never seen a single episode of Game of Thrones, although I will admit a crush on Emilia Clarke, and a man-crush on Kit Harington.  And I don’t really know a lot about Mastodon.  I know they rock — and that’s enough.

Since Sunrise Records in Kitchener opened up again back in April, I’ve been doing my best to support them.  Taking a chance on something I haven’t heard before, and finding the artwork badass as hell, I plopped down for Mastodon’s “White Watcher” single.  There is nothing typical about this song.  The war drums opening the track sound as if from battle.  The lyrics certainly paint a picture:  a cold and desolate land full of despair.  There is little musical backing, just some spare acoustic guitars and a few atmospheric electric licks until the haunting guitar solo kicks in.  It’s atypical of any Mastodon I’ve heard.

The B-side is the A Cappella version of “White Walker”, with just one voice.  I love how it reveals the imperfections of the human voice.  It sounds like something a character on the show might be singing, before battle.  The mourning feeling is there in the grooves of the record.

And speaking of the record, what artwork!  The A-side is a brilliant painting of a White Walker, while the B-side is a still from the show.  The snowy landscape and ragged people huddled around fires certainly illustrate what the song feels like.  Incredible single.

4.5/5 stars

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30 comments

  1. Haven’t seen that show either. Though I did watch a clip on YouTube once. Mastodon, though. I am familiar with them. This falls into the stuff I think is awrite.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I was never really interested in the characters, save for a few (Arya, Tyrion). And so the show drags on, with little plot progression I care about. And not enough dragons! (Please don’t kill me, GoT fans)

        Liked by 1 person

    1. If you’re like me, you probably have people asking you all the time, “Have you seen Game of Thrones”? All the time. I suppose I can catch up any time. I didn’t start Breaking Bad until the show ended!

      Liked by 1 person

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