Over the past decade, Mastodon has developed a reputation as the thinking person's metal band thanks to a series of concept albums that covered everything from Moby Dick and Rasputin to time travel and suicide. Yet Mastodon also has a fun side, recording the theme song for the Cartoon Network's "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" movie and co-headlining a tour with the fictional band Dethklok from the network's "Metalocalypse" show.
The band's latest album, "The Hunter," puts that sense of humor front and center for the first time. Instead of grappling with history or science fiction, Mastodon is now singing about parrots, meth heads who chop down trees, and having sex in outer space.
Of course, "The Hunter" wouldn't be a Mastodon album without some serious moments, the best of which is "The Sparrow." The song was written as a tribute to the late wife of the band's accountant. "Her motto was 'Pursue happiness with diligence,' and that motto became the lyrics to the song," singer/guitarist Brent Hinds noted in a press release.
If you go: Mastodon is at Terminal 5 on Saturday at 8 p.m. 610 W. 56th St., 212-582-6600. $30