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On its way to Artpark, Mastodon remembers the Continental, Cannibal Corpse and Mighty Taco

Heavy rock band Mastodon formed 20 years ago when drummer Brann Dailor and rhythm guitarist Bill Kelliher left Rochester and created Mastodon with lead guitarist Brent Hinds and bassist Troy Sanders in Atlanta. Mastodon's latest album, "Emperor of Sand," was the top-selling record across all genres the week it debuted, beating out artists such as Drake and Ed Sheeran.

Fresh off a Grammy win for Best Heavy Metal Performance of the song "Sultan's Curse," Mastodon is co-headlining a nine-week tour with Primus, which hits Artpark on May 23. Dailor took time recently for a telephone interview.

Question: Did you ever hang out in Buffalo when you lived in Rochester?

Answer: I remember drinking green beer at the Continental when we played a show with this band called Baphomet. We would drive up there to hang out in Cannibal Corpse's practice space. I remember being really scared to go. We played this club called the Icon a couple times. We were just always making road trips. We'd go up to get tickets at . . .  Putting on the Hits? Is that what it is?

Q: Home of the Hits.

A: Home of the Hits. That's what it's called. We'd get tickets there, then we'd go to Mighty Taco. You told someone you were going to Buffalo and they were like, "Are you going to Mighty Taco?" I remember seeing the New Titans on the Bloc tour; Napalm Death and Sepultura on the "Arise" tour. Sick of It All. Sacred Rite. Man, just a lot of heavy metal. We felt like when we played Buffalo that we were on tour. We played one show in Rochester, one show in Buffalo. We're on tour. We're making it.

Q: You once shared a tour bus with a Buffalo band, Every Time I Die.

A: Man, those guys are just hilarious. They're just some of the funniest people I've ever met. We're all Buffalo Sabres fans, which is not an easy thing to be, so there's a lot of Sabres talk when we get together.

Q: So, you guys are co-headlining with Primus. Who goes on first?

A: They're playing last, which is awesome because then we get done early and I get to kick back and watch Primus every night. We've met a couple times but it's been brief. We're definitely going to get to know each other because we have a very long tour. This is the longest tour that we've done in a long time. I think we did almost a three-month tour with Metallica in Europe like in 2006, and that wasn't good for anybody. We came limping in on one lung at the end of it.

Q: Is Troy (Sanders) especially excited about playing with Primus?

A: I think, especially if you were a teenager in the early 90s, and you played the bass, and you were a fan of heavy music, you were a Primus fan for sure. We're all really excited. We're just big Primus fans.

Q: What can you tell Primus fans that might not be familiar with Mastodon?

A: We have a tendency to get weird. So if you like Primus, you like quirky and weird and I think we have that in us. Check us out. Don't go to the bathroom when we play.



6 p.m. May 23 at Artpark, 450 S. Fourth St., Lewiston. Tickets are $45 general admission.


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