Omnivore - Drink Mastodon’s beer, Black Tongue, this weekend

Mastodon’s beer will be on tap when they play at the Tabernacle tonight


  • Courtesy Signature Brew

Seven Mastodon, beer, and Mastodon beer things for your weekend:

1. Mastodon plays the Tabernacle tonight. There are still tickets available.

2. Mastodon has a song called “Black Tongue.” It’s the first song from the band’s 2011 album, The Hunter. It’s a good song. Here’s the video:

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3. Mastodon also has a beer called Black Tongue. It’s a Double Black India Pale Ale made in collaboration with London’s Signature Brew. (The same brewery, incidentally, that made a beer with The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn in 2012.) Here’s how Signature describes Black Tongue: “Rumbling smoky notes are offset by the elixir of misbehaving punchy hops. Citra and Magnum hops to the front, with Carafa Special 3 Malt and Pale on the baseline, this is our biggest and most powerful creation to date. The band wanted to create a ‘palate crusher’ and that’s certainly what has been delivered. A beer for enjoying slowly, letting the bombardment of flavour and intensity hit your tongue and explode with every sip.”

4. While Black Tongue was released earlier this year, and has been available sporadically at bottle shops and bars, this weekend is the beer’s Atlanta takeover. Black Tongue will be on all draft stations tonight at the Tabernacle, as well as being featured on tap at Elmyr in Little Five Points and Midway Pub in East Atlanta Village.

5. The Mastodon dudes are pretty into beer! When I spoke to drummer Brann Dailor last year for a piece on the many intersections of craft beer and heavy metal (also featuring Kennesaw’s Burnt Hickory Brewery), he raved about various IPAs, Trappist beers, and Boulevard Brewing Company’s delicious wild ale seasonal, Love Child. He takes advantage of his status as a world-traveling musician to pick up rare brews wherever he goes, and sees a lot of parallels between his band’s world and the craft beer world.

“For craft brewing, especially with a lot of IPAs and Imperial stouts, you’re going for this really extreme and complex flavor, and that would be true in metal as well,” he told me. “Especially with our band, we try to make it as complex as possible, to challenge ourselves and the listener. I think they appreciate a little bit more, you know? They can handle the time changes, and the complexities that can exist in music, but rarely do anymore.”

6. As for Black Tongue, Mastodon sat down with the Signature crew, did a tasting session, and gave the brewery direction. “We were pretty involved,” Dailor told me. “We told them the style we wanted, then did a black IPA tasting and pointed to the ones we liked the most. The label is being done by an artist named David Cook. He’s done a couple shirts for us.”

7. The beer even has a trailer featuring the song and the band: