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Devin Townsend

Experimental/Post Metal

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Devin Townsend Christeen + 4 Demos album cover
3.59 | 41 ratings | 6 reviews | 12% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, released in 1999

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Christeen (3:38)
2. Om (6:18)
3. Sit in the Mountain (3:16)
4. Processional (11:42)
a) Star Child Rise
b) Welcome Home
c) Metamorph
d) Infinite Waltz
5. Love-Load (5:01)

Line-up / Musicians

- Devin Townsend / guitars, vocals, programming, bass, keyboards
- Gene Hoglan / drums

Releases information

HevyDevy Records / Sony

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to LiquidEternity for the last updates
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DEVIN TOWNSEND Christeen + 4 Demos ratings distribution

(41 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(12%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(51%)
Good, but non-essential (24%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)

DEVIN TOWNSEND Christeen + 4 Demos reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by LiquidEternity
3 stars Any fan of Devin Townsend who really enjoys Infinity needs this album.

Om and Processional are both tracks originally intended to be on Infinity, and I find them to be wonderful tunes despite being unfinished. Om, even in demo form, is a massive wall of sound, with lots of people singing om (although, lots of people might just mean Devin several times over) a whole lot. Heavy chugging guitars and driving drums make this track into something like War. It's very upbeat and very entertaining.

Processional is built of several parts. The first is Starchild Rise, a short bit full of sound and built for Devin to sing like a madman. He hits some unbelievably high notes here and sounds great the whole time. The song progresses (actually, not very well, some of this sounds kind of copy and paste, but that is part of the problem of having it in demo form) into Welcome Home, which at some point that I can't figure out becomes Metamorphosis. Through these two bits, the song builds and climbs, preparing the listener for the Infinite Waltz. The Infinite Waltz kicks in and plays out the rest of the song with a cheesily uplifting sort of lilt. In all, another song that sadly went unfinished and remained off its true home, Infinity.

The other songs are merely average. Christeen is, to my ears, basically the same version that is on Infinity, so it is kind of redundant to own here. Sit in the Mountain is a fan favorite, something what might belong on Terria. It is kind of repetitive and in demo form it sounds kind of shrill. The last song, Love-Load, sounds like a sort of Frank Zappa humor. Here we have something that is mildly industrial but not quite, like what you might find on Project EKO or Devlab, especially the latter. It's neat for a few listens, but it's nothing you'll die without.

Fans of Devin will undoubtedly enjoy this EP, especially people who can't get enough of Infinity. But unless you really like the dude's music, I'm pretty sure this release is not for you at all.

Review by Conor Fynes
3 stars 'Christeen' - Devin Townsend (6/10)

The 'Christeen' demos are essentially a compilation a b-sides that never made it onto the album 'Infinity.' After listening to the songs on this, it's suprising that Devin Townsend deemed these unworthy of being on the album itself. It would be very nice to see these songs in their fully produced glory, because they are not garbage, as much stuff from typical demos are.

As a fan as Devin's music for a long time, I do enjoy the album, but it's nothing as memorable as one of his more masterful works such as 'Terria.' One song on this demo that I cannot see why it didn't make it onto a bigger album is 'Sit On The Mountain.' It is a very cheerful song in the Townsend-trademark way, but also a very deep-sounding song.

Another highlight is the slow but building 'Processional.' It is slow, even to the point of ambience at times, but it would have been a great, grandiose closing track to 'Infinity.'

Another positve mention for the demo is the sound quality, which is fairly above par for a demo. There is still the trademark wall of sound here, to give the songs that Devin Townsend warmth and depth.

In any case, it's worth checking out.

Review by The Crow
4 stars This little EP, despite of being made of tracks rejected from the album "Infinity", has a great quality, like almost every Devin's release!

The style fo the EP is quite different from the original album, despite of having a similar sound and production... Because you must not be wrong. The title " 4 demos" can be a little deceitful, because the sound of this songs is wonderful. Any difference in production with "Infinity" is hard to notice, so the four additional tracks we can hear have a great sound quality.

After the wonderful pop-metal act named Christine, comes Om... It's a powerful track, in the style of War of infinity, but also with some guitars riffs wich bring to my mind the song Regulator, from the Devin's "Ocean Machine" record. Great theme. And also wonderful is Sit in The Mountain, a very melodic but energetic track, wich mix pop melodies with metal in a way that only Devin Townsend can do.

And then come Processional... This track deserves a special mention, because it's 12 minutes of prog genious, crazy changes, and a visceral Devin's singing at the beginning. After this, the song developes long meldies, in a way that we could hear in a similar way in the later masterpice "Terria". Not so polished, and without the quality of the 2001 release, but still wonderful, and opening new ways for Townsend. I still can't understand why he did not include this excellent song in "Infinity".

The closing of the album, the very experimental Love-Load, is not so good as the rest of the EP... But it's also interesting to hear Townsend's noises investigation, that he would widely use in "DevLab" and "The Hummer", and also in "Terria".

Conclusion: this little EP has a wonderful production (the same of the album "Infinity"...), and three truly excellent songs apart from also outstanding Christine.. They add new ideas that maybe would have not fit well in "Infinity" (except Processional, that could have been perfectly included in the album...), but they opened new ways that we could hear in later Devin's releases. So if you like this man's music... This EP is an obligated purchase! And if you are new to this man's music, it can give you a little glimpse of his talent.

My rating: ****

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars All of you who love progressive metal so much, why haven't you checked out Devin Townsend yet? Why does he still remain mostly in obscurity in all the metal circles, I can't understand that. If anyone in metal deserves to be call a genius, it's this man. His music is typically some of the loudest and most intense music ever, but I think the difficulty that people have with him is he does lean towards post metal a bit, but not in the traditional way that most people are used to. His music is a wall of sound, even when it is at it's quietest. But it's not just any wall of sound, every sound and instrument is important, but his voice is also a part of that wall of sound and it usually isn't highlighted like vocals usually are, it becomes part of the whole instead of drowning it all out. There is no background here, it's all important in the entire picture.

So, if you are looking for a safe place to start listening to Mr. Townsend's music, this might be the answer. You are not really sacrificing a lot of time to listen to this since the total playing time is only a half hour. Even though these are demos that were originally intended for the album "Infinity", they are still good quality songs and you still get a good idea as to what kind of sound to expect. If nothing else, this EP should at least pique your interest in this artist. If you are willing to invest a little more time than that, then I would suggest the "Terria" album. Either way, you will hear some great material in either album.

The first track here is simply the same track as on the Infinity album. This is, afterall, the single for Christeen. The good thing is, the rest of the tracks are songs that were left off the album, probably because of time constraints. The 4th track is actually a combination of a few songs, in other words they have been combined into one song but it is actually a suite, the last part comprising a great waltz tempo guitar piece complete with an almost operatic alto sounding voice, though it's probably just Devin showing off his crazy vocal range. All of these tracks thus far are of the excellence that you come to expect from Devin Townsend. The last track is more of an Avant Garde piece which isn't quite so typical however. Just as a warning, it is different than what you typically hear. But it is still interesting.

So, in summary, this EP is a short burst of energy. Not the best release, but still a pretty good example of his music. Even though it is an EP, it's still an excellent addition to your prog collection because of the previously unavailable music that is included. All Townsend fans should have this and those wanting to hear a snippet of how he sounds should also check it out. 4 stars.

Latest members reviews

3 stars Although I can understand why songs like 'Om' or 'Sit on the Mountain' were left off the albulm, I definitely consider "Processional" (track 4 of 5) as another unforgettable addition to Devin Townsend's glorious body of work, that could of had a place of 'Infinity'. The energy and dynamics of thi ... (read more)

Report this review (#18073) | Posted by | Wednesday, April 20, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars this short collection of demo that somehow didn't make it on INFINITY is definiately worth listening. With Om - a great, power-charging song, Sit In The Mountain - one of Devin's best ballads, not only from INFINITY period, but regarding all of his career, and the stunning Processional it's just a m ... (read more)

Report this review (#18072) | Posted by | Sunday, December 21, 2003 | Review Permanlink

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