Friday, 7 November 2014

Devin Townsend Project "Sky Blue" (2014)

Canadian musician and producer Devin Townsend, once of Strapping Young Lad, has been in the game for over 20 years, during that time he has developed a cult following and favorable reputation for his unique style of Metal music thats been supported by his die hard fan base which I am proud to be part of. In recent years Devin has hit a musical niche after rediscovering his talent in a drug-free environment. Under the moniker "Devin Townsend Project" he scheduled 4 albums of material which he has continued onwards with. This is the sixth album, and is released as one half of Z², the other half being the second Ziltoid album.

Sky Blue is a lush sounding record, Devin's influential "wall of sound" production is warm and rounded here, the instruments have room to breath yet sound loud and powerful together. The drums are punchy, crisp and mixed to perfection, the guitars have a fantastic, distorted yet soft tone that gels so well with the synthetic keys. Their chemistry is key, giving Sky Blue its gorgeous and immersible overtone. The synths are diverse in there subtlety, sometimes letting the guitars take focus, and often oozing awe inspiring ethereal noise through the mix, filling in the gaps, acting as the glue for a beautiful lush sound. Devin & Anneke's voices are epic, powerful and soaring, ringing out some glorious and captivating leads, which are captured perfectly on these tracks. Devin knows exactly what he's doing when it comes to production and gives this album a gorgeous sound thats unfortunately not met by substance.

This album kicks off with Rejoice, a bouncy, colorful metalic track with pop sensibility and bold symphonic stabs that sets an upbeat tone for this album, its followed by some tracks that shift the focus to the more drawn out, epic synth driven sound that focus on melody and awe. There's a couple more energetic, metalic songs and some great poppy choruses and hooks that will get in your head, then comes Rain City, a lengthy track shifts the mood and looses the upbeat energy, from this point the last few tracks draw out a dull end to Sky Blue, a great sounding album which has some fantastic songs, but falls short of something special.

Favorite Tracks: A New Reign, Warrior, Sky Blue
Rating: 6/10