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Devin Townsend - Devolution Series #1 - Acoustically Inclined, Live in Leeds CD (album) cover


Devin Townsend


Experimental/Post Metal

3.94 | 12 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Honorary Reviewer
4 stars Devin Townsend is currently working on new material, and due to a lack of touring possibilities and encounters with fans on the road he has decided to release a series of live albums, quarantine albums, and other projects to keep people interested. This release is the first in what is called 'The Devolution Series' and is a remixed and remastered version of the 'Live in Leeds' show that was originally on the 'Empath' Ultimate Edition. Here we find Devin in his absolute element, playing his songs in a stripped-down style, plenty of reverb on the voice and picked acoustic guitar. It is a low-key set, allowing Devin to easily interact with his audience who are obviously all hardcore fans wanting to hear well-known songs in a somewhat different fashion. Devin points out that the material is generally first written on acoustic, so it must go through multiple changes before finally making it to an album, as this sounds nothing like the wall of sound I generally associate with him.

He comments at the beginning that he is making the setlist up as he goes along, and that it will be followed by a question-and-answer session, and it would have been interesting to hear that as there is such a rapport between musician and audience that those who were not there (such as myself) would get a lot from it. Hearing the songs being performed in this fashion is a revelation, as the bombast and volume has been stripped away and what we have been left with is simple beauty. In many ways this is one of the most powerful albums I have heard from Devin, as there are no defence mechanisms in place as he opens himself up, allowing his material to shine in a new light, and it burns brightly indeed. While fans will be the first ones to flock to this album, this is something which will allow those who have yet to discover Devin to hear him in a whole new way. Simply essential.

kev rowland | 4/5 |


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