Devin Townsend Project - Transcendence

Devin Townsend Project Transcendence cover
Devin Townsend Project
Transcendence
InsideOut Music
2016
7.5
One has to give it up to Devin Townsend, for the guy is a truly forward thinking, norm smashing individual than when he was given a chance to shine from the excellent Steve Vai, he grabbed it by the hair he lacked and just managed to popularize a truly odd, but pretty wonderful sort of bizarre and pretty experimental style of music that can combine utmost musicality with vocals that truly challenge both in terms of performance but also in convention of what’s acceptable or not.
 
It’s symphonic, in a twisted way, electronic, supersonic, acoustic, odd metered, but simple in places, extreme… it’s whatever the fuck Devin decides it should be, without following some definite masterplan, but it manages to sound epic, musical and unsettling and soothing at the same time. It’s like throwing all the wring ingredients in the kettle and coming out with something pretty delicious still...
 
There’s a ton of cool songs here, from a reworked “Truth” (from “Infinity”) that opens the album in a grand overture, to the completely moving “Stormbending” that challenges all perceptions you might have had, the haunting “Failure”, which sounds still pretty massive, the cool “Secret Sciences”, the initially soft, then twisted and tangled “Higher” that’s like a small self-contained symphony to the mentally deranged, or the poppy “Stars” or the awesome title track that feels almost holy and mystical despite its sci-fi soundtrack/soundscapes. “Offer Your Light” is far more direct and sounds almost Metallica influenced, when there aren’t beautiful female backing vocals. “From the Heart” is more ponderous, with acoustic soft sections, but hey, it’s hevy devy, so it’s still has 2-3 moments where you’ll go WTF just happened! There’s a cover “Transcendental Generation” (ween) and “Gump” just concludes the record, being no less weird that anything that preceded it.
 
The second CD comes only in the deluxe edition, entitled “Holding Patters” and it’s a more electronic bunch of demos, some even back from “physicist”… oh well, I mean with this being the seventh project album and n-th one overall, you can certainly not accuse our favorite Canuck that he’s resting on his laurels or that he’s predictable.
 
Mindfunk as usual then. Strange and Beautiful… Infectious!