Games Meet Metal: Devin Townsend's Addicted!: Another Disturbying Review

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Devin Townsend's Addicted!: Another Disturbying Review

Addicted! (exclamation mark included) is the second release in the mysterious Devin Townsend Project, which is the brainchild of Strapping Young Lad's founder/frontman.... Devin Townsend. The reason why it is so mysterious is that each record attempts to flesh out a piece of Mr. Devy's identity. After taking a year off from writing, Devin Townsend sat down with a guitar and came up with 60 songs that fit into four distinct music styles. Devin decided to seek out a specific set of musicians to help him bring each style to life on four different albums and release them under the name, Devin Townsend Project. With Ki (the first release of the DTP) Devin succeeded in stepping away from his extreme metal shadow and revealing a side of him that is calm, melodic and peaceful. The record explores a number of different themes from Devin's past addictions to his new found self-control. However, Devin turns a complete 180 with Addicted!, at least in a musical sense.

Addicted! abandons the peace and tranquility of Ki and returns to his signature wall-of-sound assault of thick guitars, heavy drums and piercing vocals to deliver a metal album with a hint of, um, 90's dance music. Stay with me, I know that sounds like an odd combination but somehow Devin makes it work. Check out the song Bend if Like Bender! below:

See? Oh, and the other vocals you hear on this song belong to former The Gathering vocalist Anneke von Giersbergen. Now, not EVERY song is like Bend it Like Bender!. In fact, Devin sticks closely to his metal roots, but he drops a couple of ballads here and there for good measure. There are a lot of chunky riffs that gets the head banging which gives this record a heavy feeling overall. Not SYL heavy, but it can easily be compared with the likes of Accelerated Evolution, Ziltoid and Terria.

Like Ki, this album explores themes based on his past addictions. I found that there were songs that represented a feeling of joy and songs that represented a feeling of self-loathing. The lyrics in Ih-Ah! may be what he was feeling during his pursuit of sobriety. I find it is Devin's strongest performance on the record, even though he holds back which seems to add a sense of desperation to his vocals. The closing track, Awake!, is another highlight for the album and if I were a gambling man I would say that it sets up what we can expect to hear in the next release titled Deconstructed.

In closing, I give this album a Slaytanic rating and I highly recommend that you pick it up. Also, Devin Townsend will be supporting Between the Buried and Me on their latest tour. The dates that Hevy Devy will be appearing can be seen here.

PS: Here's a breakdown of our brand-spankin' new rating system:

A-, A, A+ = Slaytanic
B-, B, B+ = Rippin'
C-, C, C+ = Meh-core
D-, D, D+ = Ozzfest 2003
E-, E, E+ = Limp Bizkit

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