Concert Review with PHOTOS: Mastodon & Gojira

Photos by Mark Derricutt

Photos by Mark Derricutt

By Mark Derricutt

Artist: Mastodon & Gojira

Date / Venue: Saturday March 31st, 2018 - Trusts Stadium, Auckland

TAP TAP… is this thing on?

Let me put the camera down for a moment, whilst Saturday night’s Gojira / Mastodon show almost never happened due to an unfortunate freight issue with gear, it would also transpire that our scheduled reviewer for the show fell ill and could not make the show. So here I am, reflecting on what has been one of the most anticipated metal shows of the year so far.

 It's been three years since Mastodon hit our shores back in 2015 bring in tow The Ocean, and now they back along with the formidable French act Gojira. To say I was torn over who I was more excited to see is an understatement; having not seen Gojira before had me leaning in their direction.  

Reflecting on the show, I confess I'm still torn. As each band was performing on borrowed gear, neither showed signs of the potential havoc that could have ensued. I attribute this on both the professionalism and calibre of the bands themselves, along with that of the sound, lighting, road/tech crew, and everyone who came together to provide gear and work their magic to make sure the show went off without a hitch. The downside of this, whilst the show ‘did go on’ it was at the expense of local opening acts Mothra and Just One Fix.

 I can still remember the 2015 Mastodon show, I had recently returned to the world of concert photography, and it was my first time shooting The Powerstation. Nerves racked with excitement, the air crisp around me with a glazed look to my eyes (which I account for The Oceans strobes beaming into my eyes).  

Now it's 2018, my first time shooting The Trusts Arena. The air is once again crisp after a short bout of rain and we're ready for round two!  If you didn't know the bands were performing on last-minute gear, you would have been hard-pressed to have noticed (except for hard working techs running on stage to adjust drums). From both my vantage point in the photo pit, and from various spots around the arena during the show, the sound was killer, along with perfectly timed lighting for Gojira I don't think I could have asked for a better evening of metal.

 I'm sitting here trying to come up with words that come close to describing the show, but all I came up with is an internet meme styled "MUCH METAL! SO PROG!" and let the photos speak for themselves. If I had to offer a negative comment on the show - my legs would be telling you the 20-song set from Mastodon was just a bit too long, my ears however, would definitely be in disagreement there.

 All I can say is if you didn't make it;  you missed out on something special and to be sure you make it to whatever acts the crew at Storm The Gates bring over next….