Devin Townsend
Snuggles


2.5
average

Review

by Brendan Schroer CONTRIBUTOR (196 Reviews)
December 8th, 2021 | 18 replies


Release Date: 12/03/2021 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Simply put, Snuggles is just a meditation and de-stressor album. Nothing more, nothing less.

The prospect of Devin Townsend doing another yin-yang-style dual release instantly brought back a flood of memories for me, harkening back to his Deconstruction and Ghost projects from back in 2011. But something seemed a bit different this time around. While he marketed The Puzzle as the “chaos” and Snuggles as the “calm”, both records actually strike me as two different sides of the same coin - that is to say, The Puzzle isn’t really that intense or crazy like Deconstruction was. But seeing as Snuggles would be the Ghost in this scenario, how exactly does it approach the new age/ambient format? Well, imagine if you took out the dynamic instrumentation of Ghost and made the record more homogeneous and formless.

Keep in mind that I mean that in both a (semi-)positive and negative way. Snuggles is an incredibly relaxing and meditative album, giving off the aural equivalent of lying on a bed of clouds. In fact, unless you listen intently, the record will pass by you without much of an impression at all; each song seeps into the next, as if you’re listening to one 38-minute track. Sure, there are a few notable moments here and there; “The Ocean” is much more fleshed-out with its shifting dynamics and layered vocals, and “Blue Dot” benefits from the small bits of flute and reverb-laden electric guitar it adds to the soundscape. But taken as an entire experience, Snuggles is very clearly intended to be background music. Most songs are in the exact same key (F), making the songs blend together even more; on top of this, Townsend himself doesn’t really do much vocally other than the aforementioned layering, as well as some mellow crooning to drive home the atmosphere of the record. But again, if you’re in the mood for easy-listening or meditation music, this will at least fit the bill and give you something pleasant while you try and de-stress. And if there’s another thing I’d give Snuggles credit for, it’s that it does stay devoted to one singular vibe; anyone looking for a record that unapologetically sticks to a soft, ethereal sound will certainly find it here.

So we arrive at a bit of a conundrum: who exactly should I recommend Snuggles to? If you’re familiar with Townsend’s more low-key work, then you’re already familiar with better albums than this one. Ghost has much of the same calming atmosphere as this, but with much more varied and explorative songwriting. Casualties of Cool had its ambient moments, but combined that with slick country and blues influences that gave it a lot of character. And then you have Ocean Machine: Biomech and Terria, which were near-perfect fusions of crushing metal and introspective melodies. But Snuggles does at least partially stand out, in the sense that any form of conventional songwriting has been removed entirely. So if anything, it’s much closer to albums like Devlab or The Hummer, just with a little bit of Ghost atmosphere thrown in. But I think that will make this a hard sell to many Townsend fans, as his ambient records have never really seen the acclaim that most of his other projects have. And while Snuggles is a decent enough easy-listening record, the relaxing atmosphere is really all it has going for it; as I stated, there’s not much in the way of varied or compelling songwriting like there was on Ghost or Casualties of Cool. Simply put, Snuggles is just a meditation and de-stressor album; nothing more, nothing less.



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user ratings (61)
3
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mwinstanley7 (5)
This is an excellent set. For me the bluray is the focus. An engaging movie and a stunning surround ...



Comments:Add a Comment 
Koris
Contributing Reviewer
December 8th 2021


12995 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I kept going back and forth between a 2.5 and a 3, but I think a 2.5 is where I'll stay. This is pleasant, but incredibly inessential



Also, I might have name-dropped a few too many of Devin's other albums, but I feel this record invited a lot of comparisons with his other "soft" albums

zaruyache
December 8th 2021


24863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

delet this !!!

porcupinetheater
December 8th 2021


9076 Comments


Record helped me fall asleep in a reasonable amount of time last night, can’t go below a 4 for that assist

zaruyache
December 8th 2021


24863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

correct

Pikazilla
December 8th 2021


20630 Comments


all devy records except casualties in the previous decade were zzzzzzzz quality

zaruyache
December 8th 2021


24863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

decon and ghost came out then got yaaa

Pikazilla
December 8th 2021


20630 Comments


decon was shite, mate

Veldin
December 8th 2021


4651 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Deconstruction is literally in my top 5 Devy

Koris
Contributing Reviewer
December 8th 2021


12995 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I wouldn’t say Deconstruction’s one of my favorites, but I definitely enjoy it from time to time for how over-the-top it is

Snake.
December 8th 2021


23792 Comments


idk why devy writing an album called snuggles is so funny to me

Source
December 8th 2021


19349 Comments


gonna check

Dizchu
December 8th 2021


364 Comments


he said that he called it Snuggles to be deliberately cringe in order to be emotionally vulnerable or something... idk

album is fine but it reminds me of Pink Floyd's last album, pleasant but forgettable

Koris
Contributing Reviewer
December 9th 2021


12995 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yeah, tbh I kinda chuckled every time I had to type the album title in the review

rockarollacola
December 9th 2021


1230 Comments


worst album title of 2021

DoofDoof
December 9th 2021


10921 Comments


snuggling with Devon...well...idea sounds gross not gonna lie

Koris
Contributing Reviewer
December 10th 2021


12995 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I mean, I wouldn't snuggle with Devin, but he is the nicest musician I've ever met - I think that was back in 2014 or 2015

Koris
Contributing Reviewer
December 10th 2021


12995 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

He and William Duvall of AiC were at the same booth when I was at the NAMM show, and they were easily the most approachable musicians in the whole place

Gmork89
December 29th 2021


8251 Comments


Met Devin twice and I agree, nicest dude ever.



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