AGE OF SILENCE & WINDS’ Andy Winter New Solo Album Available Now

Andy Winter - IncomprehensibleKeyboardist/composer Andy Winter of WINDS and AGE OF SILENCE fame has a new solo album, Incomprehensible, which is available now via The End records.  The album features an impressive roster of guest vocalists from MADDER MORTEM, AGALLOCH, GREEN CARNATION, EDGE OF SANITY, PECCATUM, BORKNAGAR, NOVEMBERS DOOM, and WINDS.

Also appearing are Jan Axel von Blomberg aka Hellhammer (MAYHEM, WINDS), Carl August Tidemann (WINDS, ex-ARCTURUS), Øystein Moe (WINDS, ex-ULVER), Don Anderson (AGALLOCH, SCULPTURED) and Mike Young (THE DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT).

Having continued his approach of always applying a very genre-defying style, “Incomprehensible” is yet another unmistakable and unique record from Andy Winter, and one that provides a different experience altogether when compared to anything else in metal, or indeed most music.

APESHIT’s Top Metal Albums of 2012

As another great year for heavy music comes to a close, APESHIT takes a look back at our favorite pieces of music of 2012. This year had some great comebacks in CRYPTOPSY and STRIFE. There were also some nice surprises in the new sheer quality of the new SIX FEET UNDER and brutality of the new SOULFLY.

We want to thank all our readers, friends in the industry, and all the amazing artists, big and small, that we get a chance to work with for a great 10th year of existence. As the music industry as a whole continues to take an economic hit, let us all remember: If you like a band or one of their releases, support it!

Here’s hoping for a great 2013!

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DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT – Epicloud

Devin Townsend‘s last record, Deconstruction, was the soundtrack for a man going through many life changes and a total reconfiguration of himself going forward. Now that Devin has been reborn, Epicloud is a return to the familiar euphoric sound and style that fans have come to love. The songs seemingly run the whole spectrum of his solo career.

First things first, Epicloud can only be fully enjoyed and appreciated in its full form, the 2-CD version. While the songs have been sequenced on the first disc or single disc version to be more cohesive or singular, the songs on the second disc display more of the excellent diversity of Devin.

Perhaps the coolest thing about Epicloud is the return of Anneke Van Giersbergen (AQUA DE ANNIQUE/ex-THE GATHERING). Once the hilarious lyrics sung by a choir on “Effervescent!” are complete, Anneke‘s beautiful vocals come in with, “I love you. I need you…,” and you’re instantly in heaven. She appears throughout the record and is utilized in different degrees rather than as a “co-vocalist.” Her first appearance with Devin on Addicted worked out so well and the results are just as good here.

Epicloud represents what everything that is pure and honest about great music. There is so much content here like the fun and funny songs like “Lucky Animals,” the soulful “Where We Belong” and “Divine,” the offkilter “The Mind Wasp,” and the godly “Save Our Now.” Longtime fans will recognize PHYSICIST‘s “Kingdom” in re-recorded yet unchanged. STRAPPING YOUNG LAD fans will be happy to hear the closest thing to STRAPPING in the blasting “Socialization.” “Little Pig” closes out the record in style with acoustic guitars, pure soul, and a feel good tone.

The bottom line is that Epicloud is one of the greatest records of Devin Townsend‘s career. The indisputable, beautiful level of musicality and emotion will make this a favorite for decades to come. (Inside Out Music/Century Media Records)

DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT, KATATONIA, PARADISE LOST, STOLEN BABIES @ El Rey, Los Angeles, CA (09/08/12)

The Epic Kings and Idols Tour hit Los Angeles to a packed house.  Anticipation and enthusiasm were high. The merch booths were selling well as the crowd was littered with brand new shirts, particularly of KATATONIA and the DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT.

LA’s very own STOLEN BABIES were first up with their eccentric brand of heavy music.  Always up for a challenge in front of a straight up metal crowd, the band bashed through their set with all the charisma and energy that they show on their headlining shows.  It’s always cool to see  first time spectators have a bewildered look on their faces as they watch this crazy band that looked like they jumped out of the Beatlejuice movie.  They played a few songs off of their upcoming album, Naught, which sounded right at home with their debut, There Be Squabbles Ahead.  Vocals were a bit low in the mix but still a sweet performance.


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DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT Offers Up Free Five Song EP in Exchange for a Tweet

Devin Townsend has released a free five song acoustic EP under the DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT banner featuring tracks “Supercrush,” “Kingdom,” “Truth,” “Om,” and “By Your Command.”

Free music rules. Score yourself a copy in exchange for a Tweet or Facebook post at this link: http://www.insideoutmusic.com/specials/DTP/

In related news, Townsend is hard at work on two albums slated for a 2011 release, Deconstruction and Ghost. Peep this video of the man himself giving a glimpse of orchestra tracking on Deconstruction:

THE DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT: 2010 Touring Campaign and NAMM Performance, Signing Schedule

Devin Townsend will be hitting the road in 2010 in support of THE DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT‘s Addicted album, which was met with worldwide critical praise and scored very impressive first week numbers debuting at #168 on the Billboard Top 200 chart and #2 on the Billboard Heatseakers chart. The band will join BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME, CYNIC and SCALE THE SUMMIT for a North American trek that kicks off January 8th. Visit http://www.myspace.com/devintownsenddtb for the latest tour dates.

Also, Devin will be signing and performing at the NAMM convention on January 16th. His schedule is as follows.
EMG booth: 12:30PM – 1:30PM (signing only)
Peavey booth: 1:30PM – 3:00PM (signing only)
Alvarez booth: 3:00PM – 4:00PM (40-minute solo acoustic set)

Check out rehearsal footage of Devin with his band:

Townsend comments: “Here’s a short clip of a DTP rehearsal with no overdubs and no fixes. We plan to have a choir for the tours coming up after January to cover the background vocals. My plan was always to make the live experience tight, and like the record (with a few surprises). This was our first take of ‘By Your Command‘ that day.

“I am thrilled to be able to come play for you. Thank you for allowing me to continue doing whatever it is I do. I believe now is the start of it all. What I want to do is pretty epic in terms of live concerts. I think my dissatisfaction with shows in the past is that I want to see and provide people with an EVENT, a spectacle, and the music is the soundtrack to the experience. First things first is getting the new band tight and disciplined, we’re ready to play this first tour (our first one) with BTBAM, CYNIC and SCALE THE SUMMIT. When I complete ‘Deconstruction‘ I believe we’ll have every musical base covered to make a heck of a statement.

“Have a great New Year folks. Keep it strong, keep it brutal. Keep it quiet, keep it gentle. See you all soon.”

DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT to Release Ki

In a world of increasing conformity and musical banality, Devin Townsend is among the few real personalities who have character, charisma and surprising innovative creativity. As a solo artist and producer, a member of the (by now disbanded) STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, and vocalist on Steve Vai’s album, Sex and Religion, – Townsend has always inspired fans and critics alike. The latest chapter of his extremely diverse career is entitled Ki and will be out in May/June 2009.

Ki is the first in a series of four albums under the moniker ‘DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT.’ Each album is essentially a different band or collection of session musicians playing my music,” Townsend explains. “They were chosen based on what the theme of the album is and the vibe that the album is trying to project. The album Ki is very specific in this quartet of albums in that it controls its anger throughout, barring one song – ‘Heaven Send‘ – and really is an exercise in having little to prove.”

The most renowned project member on Ki is drummer Duris Maxwell (62), who has played with many acts, such as HEART, JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, THE POWDER BLUES, TOMMY CHONG and THE TEMPTATIONS. Maxwell even jammed with Hendrix. “I am very conscious of drummers and the energy they bring to the bands,” Townsend says. “I went to a blues club way up in the North of Canada and watched Duris. He has the vibe I wanted for the drums here: nothing to prove, but strong and a bit angry. Duris is an older cat but he’s heavy.” He is supported by bassist Jean Savoie. “Jean plays in a BEATLES cover band and spent years playing the cruise ships all over the world. Name a style and he can jam it for hours. His technique is accomplished, and the fact that he had never played heavy music made him and Duris perfect for the project.” Dave Young is the keyboardist, and Townsend has been working with him for years: “He’s the most schooled musician out of all of us and can play any instrument. Keyboard players typically annoy the hell out of me, but Dave is more of an ambient musician and fills the spaces with fitting but unusual note choices simply by watching where I am on my fretboard.”

After an extremely difficult phase (“I quit many bad habits in my life after SYL ended. I felt depressed, angry and unhealthy and was not satisfied with living that way for the rest of my life. I quit all drugs, alcohol and a host of other addictions that were controlling me and my world”), Ki now sees him embark on an unmistakably new path. Although not overly aggressive, the album oozes a haunting intensity, a vitality which hides below a seemingly smooth surface. “Ki is a subtle, severe album, a challenge in some ways. The point to the music is that the whisper is louder than the roar in many ways. Ki is – on the surface – quiet and unassuming. Whenever it begins to lose its temper, it stops and doesn’t let go. It is avoiding that temptation, as that sort of anger is really gratifying but ultimately just leaves me unhappy.”

In perfect unison with this thoroughly unusual, gripping and intelligent album, Townsend presents a three-dimensional cover artwork. As the music on Ki, the graphic design is also consciously multilayered. Townsend: “I live in the North of Canada and I believe that the native cultures of the world have it really down in terms of spirituality. Nature is ‘God,’ in all its subtlety and terror. And we are all a part of it, whether or not we want to be. The mask on the cover is based on native North American and Chinese paintings. It is not authentic and is just meant to be two faces in one.”

And what will the future bring? “When all four records in the DTP series are done and the ultimate box set is released at the end (eight records plus a DVD), I will play selected shows throughout the world. I will not climb into a van and play clubs in the middle of nowhere, though, I am going to assemble a sober team of incredible musicians to play ALL the records, perfectly, to many people. You will see me soon, and get ready for the next three records in the series; Ki is a subtle introduction to a sprawling theme. Please enjoy, it’s good to be back.”

http://www.myspace.com/devintownsenddtb