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Devin Townsend - Physicist CD (album) cover


Devin Townsend


Experimental/Post Metal

2.92 | 169 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Another history lesson, and more facts of information. During the late 90's, Devin had started to take his musical experiments even further, by getting in contact with Jason Newsted from Metallica. The 2 jammed and where about to release an album under the name of IR8. But, if anyone knows the history of Metallica, apparently James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich where not big fans of their bass player going off and starting side projects.

So, having a load of material and no band, Devin decided to give his friends in Strapping Young Lad a call and have them as his backing band for this album. Which makes me ask the question...

Why wasn't this a Strapping Young Lad album!

Ok, I know this wouldn't have went well with the Strapping fans, but I have to admit, this album isn't too far from what the band would have been doing a few years later on their self titled album. Musically at times there are a lot of harkenings to the sounds created on Devin's previous 2 albums, but other than that, at least more than half of this album would have been perfect material for the band, and also, the line up for this album is al the guys from Strapping anyway, so it really wouldn't have been too much of a dramatic change.

The album opener "Namaste" is a brilliant opener. With a lot of power and some absolutely insane vocals from Devin, it starts the album off on a positive but rather insane note.

"Victim" has to be one of the heaviest songs on the album. In fact, the riff in the song is very similar to the riff in "Detox." An absolute heavy and bone crushing song.

The early version of "Kingdom" is alright, but I have to admit, the "Epicloud" version of this song completely shadows it. I do like the instrumentation in this one, making the music have a very thunderous approach.

"Death" is probably the most insane song on the album. With music that almost touches on almost grindcore moments, Devin babbles like a basket case.

One of my personal favourites has to be "Irish Maiden" (mainly because I'm Irish). The rather folky and relaxing nature of the song adds well with the insane heaviness of the rhythm section behind it.

The album closer "Planet Rain" is the real epic on the album. A pretty simple enough idea, but as it builds up throughout, it does reach a brilliant and rather epic climax. A bit of an underrated Devin song if I'm being honest.

In conclusion, everyone's going to have a mixed opinion about this album. Personally I rather like it, but I would admit in saying that this is one of Devin's weakest albums. I would prefer if this was a Strapping Young Lad album or if the IR8 project with Jason Newsted, but it is what it is, and I rather enjoyed it. I wouldn't recommend this to every fan or prog fan, but metal fans might get a kick out of this album, cause it is pretty nuts.


arcane-beautiful | 4/5 |


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