Devin Townsend Project - Ghost

(CD 2011, 72:45, HevyDevy Records / InsideOut Music)

The tracks:
  1- Fly
  2- Heart Baby
  3- Feather
  4- Kawaii
  5- Ghost
  6- Blackberry
  7- Monsoon
  8- Dark Matters
  9- Texada
10- Seams
11- Infinite Ocean
12- As You Were

Devin Townsend Project Website        Inside Out Records

This is my first review for the website of Background Magazine. Unfortunately, I have to review an album of a musician I'm not familiar with. That is, I've heard of Devin Townsend Project, but I never listened to their music. So, this is my first acquaintance with the music of this Canadian artist, who's trying to overcome a very difficult period in his life with a series of four CDs. In the past Townsend was an alcohol and drugs addict, but in recent years he got clean. That's probably the reason that each CD of the four-part contains a different style of music referring to the different stages he went through during the recordings of the albums.

Ghost is the third part of this 'quadrilogy' after Ki and Addicted, both recorded in 2009. This album isn't really what I expected from this musician. Devin Townsend is known for his raw guitar playing, but on this CD it's just the opposite. While Ki is melodic and Addicted is very explosive, Ghost certainly has a folky touch. The album starts with Fly containing a lot of Celtic sounds, but it also reminded me of the album On Air from The Alan Parsons Project. The song sounds both mystical and soothing and turns smoothly in Heart Baby. The tempo remains unchanged, but the sound changes a bit toward the Irish band Clannad with  Irish harmony vocals along with the sound of an acoustic guitar.

Feather is a bit more up-tempo, but still contains these mystical sounds of the first songs. Fortunately, halfway through the album these sounds change a bit, for the title track Ghost sounds poppier. The melody of this song kept spinning in my head because of the number of repeats in the words. Blackberry differs from the first tracks because of its country-like sound, but that's the only difference; the remainder is the same as any other song on this CD.

Well, the music on Ghost doesn't bring me in a better mood, mainly because of the overall sound that remains the same. I hear many vocals and Celtic sounds, but hardly any variation. Moreover, the last songs on this album seem to be a copy of the first tracks, so I soon was inclined to skip to the next track. In my opinion, Ghost is too simple and plain dull. I don't think this CD will make another spin in my CD-player.

** Jeroen Bik (edited by Peter Willemsen)

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