Album Review: Devin Townsend Project – Transcendence

By Marvin Dotiyal, Contributor

[HevyDevy; 2016]

Rating: 6.5/10

Key Tracks: “Offer Your Light,” “Secret Sciences”

Devin Townsend Project’s latest album, Transcendence, showcases a wide spectrum of modern, progressive metal; the album is best described as a heavy, spiritual, musical journey accompanied by a mixture of different metal sub-genres. The album utilizes a myriad of musical components such as symphonic elements, atmospheric synth leads, melodic guitar riffs, and heavy double-bass drumming. Having said that, much like Devin Townsend Project’s previous works, this album does not fail to show the band’s remarkable songwriting capabilities.

Each song from the album contains a unique atmospheric vibe, and it feels almost as if you are present in the song itself. For starters, “Offer Your Light” is the ideal track for new listeners to get into the album and the genre. With a catchy synth lead and an upbeat tempo, this song is easily one of the most energetic tracks from the album. “Higher,” a 9-minute long song, has a lot of musical diversity that is truly impressive as a whole. “Secret Sciences” is also worth a listen, as it captures the band’s defining sound: soaring guitar solos, symphonic suspense and Townsend’s signature vocals.

However, one may perceive that Transcendence is just another generic progressive/symphonic metal album, not to mention that new listeners may be thrown off by the length of each track. At first, the whole album sounds as if Dream Theater had a baby with the Halo soundtrack, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but definitely not the easiest thing to jam out to on a Friday night. Even the most avid metal fans will have to take their time to get into the band’s realm of progressive metal.

If you are a die-hard fan of progressive metal, you will have no problem enjoying Transcendence. This band and album is definitely not for everyone—it’s an acquired taste that will transcend your appreciation for music if you get around it.

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