Devil’s Review: Devin Townsend Project – Epicloud

Epicloud_album_cover

Ahhh, Hevy Devy is up to his old (yet fresh) tricks again with his project’s latest album Epicloud.  I used to disregard Townsend’s style back when all I knew about him was that he led Strapping Young Lad.  They came across to me as a chaotic sound experiment at times, and the joke was on the listener.  Now I recognize what he was doing then.  I really didn’t go back and listen to SYL until after I had discovered his solo stuff, particularly the album Synchestra – a bit a genius if you ask me.  Epicloud is the 5th installment from the project and the album lives up to its name.

The man with the wall of sound is once again front and center with his latest project album.  I just can’t stop listening to it.  I keep humming the songs, sometimes meshing some of them together.  Last night my wife expressed a bit of disbelief that I cared for DT at all.  His songs (of late, anyway) tend to be very “poppy” (yet heavy), and I don’t usually like anything that could be considered pop.  Townsend seems to know how to do it right, though.  This album reminds me quite a bit of Addicted! from a few years ago.  The song writing and inclusion of Anneke Van Giersbergen are quite reminiscent of that album.  Epicloud, though, is not just a rehash of the same ideas, but the composition and production is clearly Devin Townsend.

Granted, there are some lulls on this album, but for the most part, it’s typical Devin with big guitars, awesome singing, and really catchy songs.  Sure, some of it seems a little fluffy, but it’s so well done, I don’t care.  There are plenty of highlights to go around and nearly every song is worth the listen.  Only 3 of the 13 songs are over 5 minutes long, getting the point across without droning on too long.  Absolute highlights for me are True North, Lucky Animals, and Liberation – a trio of songs that get the album off to a roaring start.  There are hints of Meatloaf at times, in that overblown musical kind of way.  Townsend has included a rerecording of Kingdom, not straying very far from the original, and it fits in well here.  The one song, though, that I truly love here is More!  It’s a killer 4 minute tune, one I hope makes it to the live setlist.

Check out the “unofficial” video for Lucky Animals, in case you missed Rob’s posting of it earlier:

Epicloud is an enjoyable listen with a lot of simply awesome songs, a few slower ones that I will admittedly skip, but overall another infectious work from Devin Townsend.  This album is highly recommended.

I hear the sound in a METAL way.

-Harley

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One response to “Devil’s Review: Devin Townsend Project – Epicloud

  1. Good review! Loved the album and have been streaming it non-stop since release day. Tried to pick up a copy today but it was sold out, so now have to commute about 40 minutes to another store to buy it! Luckily they have the special edition in stock so am looking forward to hearing that one.
    The one thing I really liked about the album myself is that, while it is poppier like you say, it doesn’t sound like Devin is trying to pander to radio or to commercialism. It sounds “sincere” and all of the songs are great.
    As I mentioned in a previous comment, he totally killed it when he was here in Vancouver a couple of weeks ago and the songs from this album that he played sound great live. If you get a chance to see the tour with him Katatonia/Paradise Lost and Stolen Babies, check it out. Katatonia/PL and DT have all released awesome albums this year-Particularly Paradise Lost whose new one will probably end up being my album of the year.

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