Mastodon’s Bill Kelliher Says Turnstile Is a Major Influence on Upcoming Material

Alfred Nitsch, CC BY-SA 3.0 AT , via Wikimedia Commons
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Mastodon has been going strong for two decades and there is no sign of them slowing down; in fact, band guitarist Bill Kelliher is looking for new ways to innovate and expand upon Mastodon’s music, and one of the bands really inspiring his drive is Turnstile.

Over the course of their roughly 13-year career thus far, Turnstile has made big waves in both the mainstream and underground worlds of metal. By blending hardcore with pop sensibilities, Turnstile has created music that is super heavy, but also really fun-sounding and catchy. They are one of the bands that have had an impact on hardcore music reaching mainstream audiences.

During a recent conversation with, Kelliher talked about what kind of music he wants to start making through Mastodon, sharing:

“I want to write music that’s really fucking heavy and to the point. I want it to sound like Mastodon but steer away from the long, drawn-out songs. I feel like we’ve been on that kind of kick for a while, and I want to move on to something a little more tangible.”

He then starts talking about how much he enjoys Turnstile and how they’ve been inspiring him:

“The stuff I’m working on is the sort of stuff that comes out swinging, you know? I’ve been listening to a lot of Turnstile, and their last record, Glow On, to me, is fucking great. I just love their guitars, and their production of it sounds great. Their songwriting is really good. It reminds me of Bad Brains, but if they were more modern, with some Jane’s Addiction mixed in.”

Kelliher is asked if Turnstile’s latest record, Glow On, “reinvigorated” his songwriting, to which he says:

“In a way, yes. That Turnstile record kind of [reinvigorated] my interest in writing in that way.”

He then goes on to talk about how Turnstile is bringing back the sound of ’80s and ’90s punk that he really enjoys:

“It’s like, ‘Well, you guys are bringing back all the cool things about the bands that I used to listen to and really look up to. I wanna do more of that.’ I’m a product of the 80s and early 90s when all that kind of stuff was really popular.”

Turnstile is awesome, and if you have yet to check out their record Glow On, you absolutely should go spin it right now. At the time of this writing, Mastodon’s latest studio album is 2021’s Hushed and Grim.

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