“The Hunter”, the new album from Atlanta progressive metallers MASTODON, sold 39,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 10 on The Billboard 200 chart. The band’s previous CD, “Crack The Skye”, opened with 41,000 units back in April 2009 to debut at No. 11. MASTODON‘s 2006 effort, “Blood Mountain”, came in with just over 24,000 units — significantly more than the 8,000 first-week tally registered by its predecessor, 2004’s “Leviathan”— which put it at No. 32.
“The Hunter” was made available in several configurations that feature an exciting interactive 3D experience known as Augmented Reality. The technology, created by Los Angeles-based company Total Immersion, combines virtual and real worlds to create a 3D one-of-a-kind interactive experience that users can control. Just by using a camera on a computer, their own face and the cover art on “The Hunter”, the user can turn themselves into “The Hunter” sculpture that is pictured on the cover.
The physical configurations for “The Hunter” are as follows:
* Standard CD: Includes the album’s 13 tracks, plus a basic Augmented Reality Experience in which the users head becomes the “creature” on the album’s front cover in full 3D.
* Deluxe Physical CD/DVD: Sold as a 13-song digipack with an alternative cover, this package includes the standard CD, with the basic Augmented Reality Experience, plus a DVD that includes a track-by-track, psychedelic visualizer, the “Deathbound” and “Black Tongue” videos.
* Direct-To-Fan Package: This exclusive package is comprised of the complete 13-song digipack album. Additionally, buyers received two digital bonus tracks on day of release. An exclusive insert was included which triggers an enhanced Augmented Reality Experience and contains additional embedded content. Also included is a 20″ x 30″ lenticular poster of the standard album cover artwork.
“The Hunter” track listing:
01. Black Tongue
02. Curl Of The Burl
05. Octopus Has No Friends
06. All The Heavy Lifting
07. The Hunter
08. Dry Bone Valley
10. Creature Lives
12. Bedazzled Fingernails
13. The Sparrow
14. The Ruiner (limited-edition bonus track)
15. Deathbound (limited-edition bonus track)
The follow-up to 2009’s “Crack The Skye” was MASTODON‘s third studio CD to be made available on Reprise Records in the U.S. and Canada and the band’s first to be issued through Roadrunner Records outside of North America.
“The Hunter” was recorded at Doppler Studios in Atlanta with producer Mike Elizondo. Drum tracks were previously completed in Los Angeles at the legendary Sound City Studios where NIRVANA‘s masterwork “Nevermind” was recorded.
MASTODON‘s “Curl Of The Burl” video can be seen below. Drummer Brann Dailor came up with the concept for the clip, which was helmed by director Roboshobo (a.k.a. Robert Schober; METALLICA‘s “All Nightmare Long”), who previously worked with MASTODON on the “Divinations” and “Sleeping Giant” videos.