The enigma that is Devin Townsend brings us the latest in his mind bending musical productions, posing the question, what is Empath going to include, and where exactly will this journey take us.
Those not so familiar with Mr Townsend, the music produced by his unrivalled talent challenges the boundaries of genres and makes the term Progressive sound rather one dimensional. There is no doubt that there are deep seeded roots in Metal and Rock music, however rather than solely allowing the confines of this music to restrict the creations, Devin goes where he wants and when he wants.
I would be here for some considerable time to try and list all styles and genres used on this album, however what can be said with some certainty is that what has been created is a complex, intricate result of some protracted music writing that anyone less that Devin Townsend would not have been able to create anything listenable, let alone something that provides such a variance of music wonder.
Opening the album is Castaway, an atmospheric and sedate number, using the sound of waves and seagulls along with a slow and relaxing electrical guitar solo prior to the soft sounds of the Caribbean begin to join in followed by a beautiful choral section, already displaying the variety that will be utilised before a more pop sound kicks, and then the guiatars and drums join the party along with the distinct voice of Devin Townsend.
Within this opening 1 and ¼ tracks we have already experienced so much and that before the chorus of ‘Genesis’ kicks in, giving us a more rock feeling and then the machine gun speed drums pummel us. After 2 tracks it is clear that this offering is going to take us further and deeper than before as the wonderful world created by Devin twist and turns around places we never knew existed.
Chad Kroger from Nickleback provides additional vocals on ‘Hear Me’ which may surprise a few as this track really bursts onto the scene, loud and powerful. There is a catchy chorus and some dark sounds created by the plethora of instruments on display, whilst the pace remains high we also have a sneaky peek at some Progressive Technical Metal and a rather brutal vocal.
This collection is a true mindbender that if your mind is not totally open to will perplex and baffle, however, a personal plea. Open your mind and enjoy the crazy and complex world of Devin as he takes you from the most beautiful and serene to the darkest rage on a seamless voyage that all need to get on board and enjoy the full range of the spectrum.
Empath is released 29th March 2019 via Devin Townsend / HevyDevy Records, InsideOut Music and Northern Music.
- Spirits Will Collide
- Hear Me