Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Casualties of Cool - Casualties of Cool

Release Date: May 14, 2014
Genre: Country Rock, Ambient.
Label: HevyDevy
Number of tracks: 15

Rating: 8.1/10

Casualties of Cool is the first of two confirmed releases this year from Devin Townsend, the second being the much anticipated sequel to Ziltoid the Omniscient. Unlike the latter of the two, Casualties represents something a bit different for Townsend. Featuring a seriously laid back vibe with ambient country-rock stylings. It is perhaps closer to Ghost than Ziltoid on the Townsend Scale.

The album features the story of a traveler, floating through time and space who is lured to a sentient planet by a woman's voice. The planet feeds on the traveler's fear, and he takes solace in an old Radio that he finds, and later, a Phonograph. Eventually, the traveler manages to face his own fears, liberating the woman trapped within the planet and freeing his soul. 

The album features several tracks which are perhaps key to this theme, Most notably towards the end with The Bridge, and Bones. As a narrative, the album works really well. Each track is individually good, but it by far works best as a whole unit. The album is designed to be listened to as a whole, and this is where it truly shines. As a collection of songs it is good, but as a whole it is fantastic. This is night time music, a dark journey of self realization. Devin describes the album as 'probably the truest reflection of who i am in life at this point' which in itself adds a really personal, close feeling to the album. It's an easy album to connect to and because of the thematic nature, this adds to the experience.

Who will this album appeal to? it depends. If you expect metal craziness, then wait for Z2, as Casualties will probably not do it for you. If you are after a chilled out, ambient ride through space, then this is a fantastic choice. It's the kind of album that really excels when you're listening through headphones in the dark. If you are a fan of Devin then it goes without saying. 

In conclusion, Casualties is a fantastic journey of music that is best listened to at night, through headphones. It's an excellent change of pace from Epicloud, and highlights and demonstrates just how enormously talented a man Devin Townsend is. 

This and Z2 are crowd funded albums, and its well worth keeping up to date with their Pledge Music page, his Facebook, his incredible website.

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