Friday, November 1, 2013

Devin Townsend - Physicist (2000)

This may seem like a Strapping Young Lad release, and it even has the same line up as the band, but "Physicist" is in fact a solo release by Devin Townsend. It was initially meant to be a album with a new project called IR8 that consisted of Devin and Jason Newsted (Ex-Metallica, Ex-Voivod, Newsted). But since the rest of Metallica did not like that Jason was not fully focused on the band, the project was scrapped and Devin continued writing the album on his own.

"Physicist" is a harder and faster version of its predecessor, "Infinity", and it is a album that does not give a shit. It has a specific sound and it sticks with that sound throughout the album, creating a red line that follows through every song. But it also feels like the variation gets somewhat left behind when everything has the same generic sound.

One of the flaws with the album is that the speed and aggressive sound makes the album sound shorter then what it actually is. The album is approximately 46 minutes long, but it feels like it is 35 minutes instead, which ends up with the sensation of being half full. In other words, you want more after the last song has been played. Now you are probably saying "Is it not a fun album since it made the time go faster?". You could definitely see it that way, but I rather see it as glass half full then half empty. "Physicist" would have felt good with another song or two, and that is that.

The clear star of "Physicist" is the epic "Kingdom" (a track that also appears in the Devin Townsend Project album "Epicloud", but more on that in its review). It is the only song on the album that has a consistent structure and it has some fine musicality, like in between the two choruses and the verse. A memorable song that is also easy to sing-a-long to. It is otherwise the heaviness or speed that most of the other songs rely on. And it works great on songs like "Namaste" and "The Complex", But I cannot help but feel that the sloppy production drags down the quality quite a bit. "Physicist" is a good album, but it could have been a lot better with a better production to support it.

Compared with "Infinity", I would say that "Physicist" is a marginally weaker album because of the weak production and the small variety. But I still think that there are some sweet moments in this album that defines Devin's ever evolving mind. However, it is obvious that Devin did not care for this album as much as some of his earlier works, and I can without a doubt in my mind say that this record would have been more fitting as a Strapping Young Lad release, since the whole ensemble helped conceive this record.

Songs worthy of recognition: Kingdom, Namaste, The Complex

Rating: 7,5/10 Victims

No comments:

Post a Comment