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Devin Townsend - Ziltoid the Omniscient CD (album) cover

ZILTOID THE OMNISCIENT

Devin Townsend

 

Experimental/Post Metal

4.20 | 407 ratings

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LiquidEternity
Prog Reviewer
3 stars This album would be more impressive if I hadn't listened to other Devin Townsend and Strapping Young Lad music before.

In all, it's a particularly fun release. The humorous concept scores a whole lot of points with me. Everyone loves aliens, and everyone loves crazy aliens who threaten to destroy the world. Devin, who to me always has a remarkable sense of humor, pumps out gags and laughs that don't detract from the album in the slightest. Rather, the music is almost more interesting when you know it's about an alien who calls himself Ziltoid the Omniscient. The music is a cross between Devin's solo work and Strapping Young Lad, which is a strength to some and a weakness to others, like me. As such a strict fusion of the two, Devin puts his usual sense of adventure and creativity on hold. Most of the creativity seems to be put into the lyrics, not a bad thing, just not as lasting quality wise.

Something in this music strikes me as something you'd hear in a video game (though a very strange video game). Somehow, and I can't tell you how, Devin uses intense metal to capture a classic science fiction feel. Arjen Lucassen should take notes. Vocally, there is less singing on this album than on Devin's other solo projects, using a sort of melodic screaming that crops up often. The only thing is, this time he screams like that for most of the album. When he sings, it's wonderful, though. And when he death growls on Planet Smasher, it's probably the wisest and most clever use of growling in any song ever. Even listeners who don't really like death metal aren't terribly turned off by this. I think, though, on the whole, the major weakness of the album is the missing melodies throughout. Some points demand a bit more clever melodies and parts, but just get screaming or a standard vocal line instead.

In all, hey, this is a good release. I still enjoy it. However, it's only an average album, especially by Devin's standards. The sound dynamics are down, while the walls of sound are less frequent or impressive. Fans of Devy will love it. People who don't know his stuff can start with it. A good meeting point for all his stuff, but as a meeting point, it's less interesting and exciting as a whole.

LiquidEternity | 3/5 |

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