This species replaces the coastal-restricted Sooretama Slaty-Antshrike (Thamnophilus ambiguus) across much of the interior of eastern and central Brazil, where it ranges from eastern Maranhão south to western São Paulo and northern Paraná. The Planalto Slaty-Antshrike prefers vine-dominated deciduous and semi-deciduous forests, where it forages, usually in pairs and frequently within mixed-species flocks, in the lower to midstories, searching primarily for insect prey. Throughout its distribution, this is generally one of the commonest and most easily observed thamnophilids. Like many antshrikes it is easily attracted using playback, with the male typically approaching first, and usually only thereafter does the rather more colorful female come in for a look. The species’ loudsong is distinctive within its range, and easily learned, but does not differ dramatically from that of the morphologically similar Sooretama Slaty-Antshrike.