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Devin Townsend - Physicist CD (album) cover


Devin Townsend


Experimental/Post Metal

2.92 | 168 ratings

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The Crow
Prog Reviewer
4 stars What would happen if one of the hardest extreme metal bands, Strapping Young Lad, leaded by Devin Townsend, make an album full with good fellings, happy and bombastic moments, a littler proggier, and some pop melodies? The result is "Physicist"...

This is an special album in the Devin Townsend's discography... Honestly, I think it's a little difficult to compare with other Townsend's solo albums, although the obvious relation it's still here... The Townsend's sound is here, the well known wall of sound, the outstanding vocals... But with more speed and power than any other disc from this great mind. The main reason are the musicians... "Physicist" is Strapping Young Lad, speaking clearly... The same musicians. The same band. And although this is not an Strapping Young Lad's album, it's imposible not to think in this band when you hear it...

So... The incredible Gene Hoglan drums are here (like in "Infinity" and "Terria"), accompanied with the strong bass of Byron Stroud. The Jed Simon guitars... Well, honestly, it's difficult to say the style of this man in guitars... Because all sounds clearly Townsend in guitars here. And the effective and constant mixture between keyboards and guitars make difficul to analize this aspect...

The great velocity of Namaste smash you in the face since the very first moment... And this mixture of speed metal with a lot of keyboards, with some catchy and poppy melodies will be the general tonic of this album. Maybe is the more homogenous and less complex Townsend album. The direction is clear... And you can hear it also in the marvellous Townsend's voice. With less variety as usual, more controlated and concise... But still impressive, adapting very well to every song.

But although the style of the album is concise, every song here is still surprising. Material have a total catchy pop choir (but it's still a extreme metal song), while Kingdom is full with landscapes and beatiful passages (but still at the same speed!). The rest fo the album follows this totallly unique and suggestive style...

With two clear exceptions... Death: a clearly extreme thrash/industrial metal song, that could be easily included in an Strapping Young Lad album... And one of the better songs from this album: Planet Rain. The proggiest and longer song of the album, slower and calmed, full with fine keyboards melodies, still with hard guitars, but with the capacity of transport you to another lands, another places... Yes, my friends, just like "Terria". I think this song, Planet Rain, is a clear advance of what "Terria" would be... Great song, indeed.

Conclusion: like every Townsend album, the word is... Different. But like every Townsend album, the outstanding originality and quality of the songs will be a great experience to prog metal lovers. Maybe not too easy at the first listening, but after a pair of opportunities, you will not be able to left hearing it.

Warning: but here you will not find anything similar to any usual prog metal band... This is not Dream Theater, or Symphony X, or Shadow Gallery... And this is also different to the other Devin Townsend, The Devin Townsend Band or Strapping Young Lad albums. This is truly original. The perfect definition is, maybe... Futuristic exteme pop metal!

Will you brave enough to discover it?

My rating: ****

The Crow | 4/5 |


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