Devin Townsend - Ziltoid Live
At The Royal Albert Hall

(3CD 2015, 63:24/ 48:07/ 49:32, Inside Out Music)

The tracks:
CD 1 - Ziltoid Set
  1- Z²(3:47)
  2- From Sleep Awake(3:47)
  3- Ziltoidian Empire(5:50)
  4- War Princess(8:58)
  5- Deathray(4:43)
  6- March Of The Poozers(6:31)
  7- Wandering Eye(3:41)
  8- Earth(7:39)
  9- Ziltoid Goes Home(6:39)
10- Through The Wormhole(3:38)
11- Dimension Z(8:11)
CD 2 - By Request Set
  1- Namaste(3:56)
  2- Night(4:59)
  3- Deadhead(7:50)
  4- Earth Day(9:37)
  5- Christeen(5:05)
  6- Supercrush!(5:27)
  7- Kingdom(7:41)
  8- Lucky Animals(3:32)
CD 3 - By Request Set
  1- Heartwave(5:40)
  2- Funeral(7:21)
  3- Bastard(10:46)
  4- The Death Of Music(10:24)
  5- Universal Flame(15:21)

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If you do not like Devin Townsend then you better ignore this album and this review. However for fans of Townsend and his “crazy” music this release is a real treat as he plays his most recent “weird” record Z2 (2014, see review) in its entirety.

The rock opera Z2, concerning a coffee obsessed alien called Ziltoid, is not to be taken too seriously, but the music is excellent, both brutal and melodic as well. The performance features guest musicians like Dominique Lenore Persi (vocals), Chris Jericho (vocals) and Jean Savoie (backing vocals), plus video narration by Bill Courage. Highlights of the first part of the show are Ziltoidian Empire (with superb speed riffing), March Of The Poozers (very creative) and Deathray, which is a classic metal song in the true sense of the word!

The second set of the show consists of the most popular songs from Townsend's musical career as well as rarely played songs. The latter being picked by fans by means of a Facebook poll in advance of this show. So, in the second part of the show you will hear popular tracks from the album Ocean Machine (1997), such as Night and The Death Of Music, both are spectacular songs! Other highlights are: Earth Day from the album Synchestra (2006) and Deadhead from the album Accelerated Evolution (2003); this is how real heavy, weird metal should sound; so play it loud! The only thing I do not like about Townsend are his brutal death metal screams, but it certainly is a must in some of his songs.... The show ends with the glorious and dramatic Universal Flame, a song clocking over 15 minutes that I would label as one of Townsend's strongest tracks ever; featuring weird hooks, riffs, bruising guitar work, lots of melody, excellent vocal melodies and a must for lovers of brutal, insane death metal. You either love it or hate it, so check it out at maximum volume!

The release will arrive in several formats (I only reviewed the audio), including a 44-page artbook that includes the entire concert and behind the scenes bonus footage and a full documentary, pressed on 3 CDs, 2DVDs and a Blue-ray disc, as a special edition digipack with 3CDs and a DVD, and as a Blue-ray including the entire show and bonus material.

**** Martien Koolen (edited by Astrid de Ronde)

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