Devin Townsend
Terria


5.0
classic

Review

by KerfuffleinaHussle USER (8 Reviews)
October 15th, 2012 | 27 replies | 1,321 views


Release Date: 2001 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Better than Ocean Machine.

7 of 7 thought this review was well written

Devin Townsend’s first four solo albums – namely, Ocean Machine, Infinity, Physicist, and Terria – come together to form what has to be one of the most promising and perplexing (if a tad frustrating) starts to any musician’s career. Townsend dived in head-first with Ocean Machine, an instant classic; critically acclaimed and thoroughly emotional, chock full of wonderful melodies that, thanks to the sublime production, rolled by like currents in the ocean from which it took it’s name. Even to this day, Ocean Machine: Biomech remains widely held as the finest achievement in Townsend’s long and fruitful career. It was shortly followed by Infinity; an album that was equal parts beautiful and balls-out crazy, and one that certainly lead to a few more divided opinions than it’s predecessor. Physicist shook things up even more, a release that Devin himself described as a “step to the side rather than a step forward.” Physicist attempted to combine the best elements of all of Townsend’s past projects; while in many ways it worked and spawned some really great material, there were far too many nasty byproducts for it to be an overall success.

So in many ways, Terria was something of a “return to form” for Townsend; a backtrack to the universal brilliance of Ocean Machine that had captured so many people’s hearts. And it succeeded in doing just that. To this day, Terria and Ocean Machine are locked in battle for the title of the definitive Townsend album; the biggest, best, most acclaimed, most ‘HevyDevy’ album you could possibly image. For many, Ocean Machine deserves the crown; for me (and I'm sure at least a few others), Terria rightfully deserves it’s place on the throne.

Thanks to Townsend’s endless depths of ambiance, wonderfully crafted melodies and beautifully fitting production values, Terria feels as much like a living, breathing block of earth as it does a piece of music; and, if you take the time to pay attention to all it’s nuances and complexities, you’ll surely be rewarded. This album’s truly brilliant moments shine through only if you’re willing to give them the light of day they need to flourish; but once you do, they’ll eternally and forcefully implant themselves in your brain. Take the echoing, lonely, earthen opening riff of "Canada;" the anthemic, layered vocals in the mid-section of "The Fluke;" the wailing, emotive guitar soloing that is used often as much for ambiance as it is for a centerpiece; the faint echoes of keyboard flourishes and samples in "Nobody’s Here;" the stunning build-up and empowering climax in "Tiny Tears" and, of course, the romping, stomping "Earth Day."

The word “epic” may be thrown around far too often when it comes to music, but Terria brings a whole new meaning to the term. It’s huge, emotional, thoroughly earthen (when I say it sounds like a great big chunk of earth, I mean it; it’s hard to understand until you sit through "Canada" with a good pair of earphones) and ultimately draining - a musical journey that grows and flourishes and rises and falls and eventually comes to a close with the bittersweet but resolving pop song "Stagnant." It’s musical and lyrical dramas are hereby overcome; the subjects of drug use and loneliness and love and confusion (and what I’m sure has to be a reference to Townsend’s near-mental-breakdown in "Earth Day") are brought to a close with the sentiment of “Life sucks, sure, but it’s all we got and you have to accept that.”

So there you have it. Both heavy and soft, loud and quiet, angry and content, confusing and inviting, Terria flows perfectly despite seemingly being an album of extremities. It’s everything a progressive rock album should be, and, once it finally clicks, you’ll be left breathless as the album closes, the final sounds of Devin and his buddies jammin’ the acoustic guitar fade out in "Humble" and the magnitude of what you just heard really hits home. Terria is Townsend at his most incomprehensible, confusing and utterly brilliant. Thoroughly and wholeheartedly recommended to anyone with ears.

Recommended tracks: Earth Day, Canada, The Fluke, Nobody’s Here.



Recent reviews by this author
Devin Townsend The Retinal CircusThe Allman Brothers Band Hittin' the Note
Matthew Good Arrows of DesireSteven Wilson The Raven That Refused to Sing
Ten East Extraterrestrial HighwayBrant Bjork Jalamanta
user ratings (645)
Chart.
4.3
superb
other reviews of this album
Brendan Schroer STAFF (5)
An expansive titan, Devin Townsend's fifth solo record is an incredible achievement....

JungWooTie (4.5)
This is what my head sounds like.:)...

Bartender EMERITUS (4)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
KerfuffleinaHussle
October 14th 2012



737 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

First review. Thoughts? Criticism?

I totally fanboyed out, but whatever.

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2012



20641 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i prefer ocean machine but goddamn excellent review, especially for a first. keep em coming man

pos'd

Digging: Fallujah - The Flesh Prevails

KerfuffleinaHussle
October 14th 2012



737 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks man, really appreciate it!

And yeah, I get why a lot of people prefer ocean machine. I think it has better individual songs - Funeral, Life, Bastard, TDOM - but I always preferred Terria as a whole album.

KILL
October 14th 2012



70599 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

ocean is better agreed

Digging: Gal Costa - Gal Costa

YoYoMancuso
October 14th 2012



10874 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

lol KILL

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2012



49791 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ocean is better

Digging: Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) - You Will Eventually Be Forgotten

controlled
October 14th 2012



467 Comments


olive?

Lambda
October 14th 2012



2411 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Yeah, imo Ocean Machine is better

Digging: Anathema - Judgement

Yazz_Flute
October 14th 2012



18764 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is Devy's "best" album for me, though Ocean Machine has some better individual songs.

Digging: Cormorant - Dwellings

Scoot
October 14th 2012



17681 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

RECYCLEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

Digging: Unjust - Glow

ChuckyTruant
October 14th 2012



15707 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

what is devy heaviest work

Digging: Fallujah - The Flesh Prevails

controlled
October 14th 2012



467 Comments


SYL

linguist2011
Contributing Reviewer
October 15th 2012



1846 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Cool review.

Digging: Black Anvil - Hail Death

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
October 15th 2012



20641 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

physicist is the heaviest of his solo stuff but SYL is a lot heavier

silentpotatofan
October 15th 2012



320 Comments


yeah nobody into music knew that ty damn pee

cb123
October 15th 2012



1993 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Better than Ocean Machine"......

na

DeadBeat
October 15th 2012



529 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I prefer this one but Ocean Machine is awesome too, Pos

ChuckyTruant
October 15th 2012



15707 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ok gotcha thanks

AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
October 15th 2012



1981 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Pos'd.

Good, well-written review - just try not to use so many semicolons next time. You don't use them incorrectly, but it's stylistically bothersome. Aside from that, this is boss.

Eat your beets. Don't eat your beets.

Digging: Rx Bandits - Gemini, Her Majesty

AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
October 15th 2012



1981 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

what is devy heaviest work


City.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy