Mastodon have always been known as tone-obsessives, with Bill Kelliher being the most straight-up metal member of the band. It’s been interesting to see him do a total 180 with his gear endorsements over the last few months, including switching from Gibson to ESP and securing an endorsement from primo-amp company Friedman.
Bill’s amp is called the Butterslax (which has also been his longtime Internet alias), and man, this thing rips. I was fortunate enough to be in a tiny room hearing Bill demo it for the outside world at NAMM a few months back, and couldn’t believe this thing’s versatility. It ain’t your daddy’s amp – or maybe, actually it is. The amp itself was modelled after a particular mid-70’s Marshall sound, where there wasn’t really a clean tone so much as there was always some crunchy. Check out how the thing sounds below: