Music and mood: 16th century meets modern metal

Mastodon. Can’t say enough about how great this metal band is. I’ve seen them live twice. 

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In 2004 they released their CD Leviathan. Reviewed in the New York Times of all places, this CD was a riff on Melville’s classic Moby Dick. Now, I tried, and failed to read this classic in college, but I like to think that listening to this CD kinda/sorta makes up for that. Maybe.

What this CD definitely did for me was help contribute to the writing of my book The Last Conquistador. I used several pieces, across a range of rock, as my own soundtrack while writing (and rewriting… and rewriting), and Mastodon’s Leviathan was a part of that.

Rodrigo, the Spanish conquistador-wannabe, is shipwrecked and then stranded in what is now the US south/southwest, among Indians who have had minimal/no contact with Europeans. From the storm that wrecks the ship, to the initial desperate days under constant threat of death, I pulled inspiration from the loud, chaotic and desperate melodies of Mastodon.

Listen below.

 

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