Hurray! Devin is back with his solo project weirdness. Self-produced, self-mixed, all instruments played by Devin. No predictable SYL (no pun intended, love it), no Devin Townsend band easy-listening mellow rock/metal (love it!), but distinct un-distilled thoughts’o’Devin. For the confused, I can say that ‘Ziltoid the Omniscient’ has been preceded by the venerable Mr. Townsends other solo records: Ocean Machine, Infinity, Physicist and Terria – the genres span mellowness over manic schizophrenia to big band metal to extreeeeeme noisecore.
‘Ziltoid the Omniscient’ is what one could call a Space Opera of infinite-dimensional topography (loosely applied). What I’ve gathered so far, an alien called Ziltoid wants the ultimate cup of coffee from the hands of humans. Humankind of course fails to deliver and Ziltoid launches an attack on planet Earth – further story will be kept in the dark, but it’s definitely entertaining.
This album continues where especially Infinity left of years ago, but the other albums are also present in a lesser degree. Metal is played fast and furious and is underlined by Devins characteristic superb vocal spectrum. The production is typical of any Devin Townsend record and reminds me of the loose soundscape of Infinity. Groovy and very heavy guitar riffs dominate together with merciless drumming and atmospheric keyboards. I normally hate keyboards, but Devin manages to convey such a feeling of… weightlessness…, that it can be no other way. Good job! Ziltoid is a metal soundtrack, where one almost can imagine a super-bad horror movie from the 50’s playing in the background. Mars attacks meets Phantom of the Opera meets Stephen Hawking.
I can’t really say anything bad about the album, other than it is exactly what I would expect of Devin Townsend. And that might be its weak spot in the long run. ‘Ziltoid the Omniscient’ is a great album, but I can already now say that I’d prefer Physicist and Terria if I were to choose.