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.