MPR: How's it going? You wanna introduce yourself and say what you do in the band?
Bill: It's going good! I play guitar and sing in a band called Mastodon.
MPR: You're out on Mayhem Fest right now, how's it been going so far?
Bill: It's been hot. One of the hottest summers I think I've ever experienced in my life. It's good though, the tour's been going well.
MPR: Are there any bands on the bill that you've gotten a chance to check out so far or hope to catch before the end of the tour?
Bill: Um I tend to go see Rob Zombie when I have friends or family in town. I mean I've seen all the bands, I'm an old guy. I haven't really been over to the other stage except for today I got over there to see my cousin's band actually opened up on one of the stages over there. Emmure. I got out and about over there.
But usually Amon Amarth, Five Finger. People that are on our stage I've seen. I need to get over to the others and see some of the other bands. I've seen Job For A Cowboy every day cause we do a signing over there during that time, and Emmure. I wanna see Scorpion Child. One of these days I'll get over there. It's kind of a busy festival, we're always doing interviews, it's lunchtime right now and you have to eat between these hours, or have this or that to do, so it's a big busy festival.
MPR: When you get some down time or a day off what do you like to do?
Bill: Sit in our hotel room and watch TV. Well sometimes. I run a lot though. So today I ran 8 miles. I get up and just start running. I'm into getting that over with first thing in the morning. Our last day off was like 3 days ago and I have a friend who's a really awesome massage therapist who came out and massaged me for like 2 and a half hours. Then we went to a pool right outside Philadelphia, swam and went out for sushi. You know, normal people stuff.
MPR: After running 9 miles how do you have energy to get up on stage and put on a great show?
Bill: I don't know. It's what keeps me going, I need to do that every day. I mean I don't run that far every day, I do it every few days.
MPR: That's impressive though.
Bill: Yeah, I impress myself!
MPR: One thing that really stands out to me about you guys is that a lot of bands switch up their sound and fans don't receive the change well. Every album from Mastodon is different, but it works for you. Is switching up your sound something that you consciously try to do?
Bill: I don't know if we really consciously do it. I mean people have told me so much that we do that, so I guess we do. It's just a natural progression of us maturing as people and as songwriters. We never wanna keep writing the same record over and over. We're constantly writing and it's always evolving, so I think we get a bit better in this department, and we try to focus a bit more on vocals and melody and not always the technicality. We tend to over think riffs, like this isn't heavy enough or fast enough or slow enough or not technical enough, add more notes. We're kind of learning that we don't have to do that. If we like the riff, then lets just do it.
MPR: Where does your inspiration come from, if you can pinpoint anything in particular?
Bill: Ponce De Leon's Fountain of Youth.
Bill: Nah, nowhere really. Nowhere tangible.
MPR: Just whatever comes to you at the time?
Bill: Touring with other bands, watching them. It just kind of seeps in. Inspiration, I'll just wake up one day and pick up the guitar, sometimes if I pick up a new guitar I get inspiration to write something new. Just kind of fooling around on the guitar in the middle of the day for a few minutes, I screw around and something just comes out. That's the riff god visiting.
MPR: I'll wrap this up so you can get to lunch before it's done! If you could have any superpower what would it be?
Bill: I'd like to be able to fly.
MPR: Instead of living on a bus all the time?
Bill: Yep not live on the bus. I'll say I'll meet you guys there, I'm gonna go fly around for a while. That would be awesome.