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Devin Townsend – Lightwork Award winner

Devin Townsend
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 17 November 2022, 6:50 AM

From his EPK, “Maybe “Lightwork” is best described as a ‘bridge between two continents’ “Lightwork” was consciously written about taking a hard look at where we are as people after a profound time in history, and then taking real care to focus our future energies on what is truly important to us considering that. Friends, health, family, creativity, time off, not running from the fear, not allowing other people’s expectations to define us, creative freedom and self-care. Doing the difficult work to begin to know who we truly are make it so that during periods of unrest, we can maintain a certain degree of peace Music is a Lighthouse.”

“Moonpeople” is the first song. In typical Devin fashion, it’s an oddball sound out of the gates. Delicate, clean vocals combine with clean guitars and a strong melody line. The sound darkens a bit at it rolls on and the vocals become raspier, and then it levels out again. “Lightworker” is another mellow offering of blue skies and sun. You stroll around the block while birds chirp in the background. The sound thickens in the chorus with magnanimous elements, and comes to a crescendo with harsh vocals, but the melodies are not left behind. “Equinox” has a melodious punch out of the gates, followed by ethereal and pretty melodies. The sound raises at the chorus with harsh vocals but again, Devin keeps the harmonic vocals at his fingertips.

“Call of the Void” rolls in with another light and airy melody augmented by keyboards. Vocal harmonies build leading to the chorus. This song is very pretty, if the melodies don’t pierce your cold heart, nothing will. “Heartbreaker” opens with some cordial keyboards and more wonderful vocal harmonies. He has a way with melody that is just hard to explain. But they keep coming, like waves of bright colors. “Dimensions” is a faster-moving song through some darkness, dipping in and out of the light. In keeping with the theme, his ethereal offering take advantage of everything that the universe offers, including some tense and heavier tones. “Celestial Signals” is a heavier offering but man do those melodies still shine brightly. Even with harsh vocals, Devin can still push a sublime and memorable sound.

“Heavy Burden” is a jovial jaunt that feature some really smooth and comely vocal harmonies. It has a vibe that reminds me of the magic of music from the 1980’s. It could be the electronic elements at work. The short “Vacation” is a three-minute drive through clear skies on a sunny day. Feel the breeze in your hair as you head south for an island destination. You are smiling ear to ear. Devin assures you that all will be “alright.” “Children of God” is the long closer. I love the groove that develops here. It is smooth and pleasing, with plenty of melodies. You hardly notice the length of the song because you are so enthralled with the sound. Acoustic notes come in after the half-way mark, carrying the melodies on their back.

One of the things I love most about the somewhat eclectic artist is that you never know what are you going to get from him. In this case, you get his mellower side, and it is glorious. He works with harmonies and melodies like an alchemist, bending, forming and shaping them to memorable songs that will not leave your head anytime soon. Perhaps the most prodigious thing about him as an artist is that even today, after close to 30 years in the industry, his well of creativity is still very deep.

Songwriting: 10
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 9

5 Star Rating

1. Moonpeople
2. Lightworker
3. Equinox
4. Call of the Void
5. Heartbreaker
6. Dimensions
7. Celestial Signals
8. Heavy Burden
9. Vacation
10. Children of God
Devin Townsend – Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Keyboards, Programming, Orchestrations
Record Label: InsideOut Music


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