.
Devin Townsend - Retinal Circus

by Kevin Wierzbicki

.
This live set (on 2 DVDs and 2 CDs) presents music from Townsend's back catalog so maybe you've heard it before but you have never seen it like this before. What Townsend has done is write a new narrative, about a young man named Harold who takes a "musical journey into the collective unconsciousness," that sort of pieces together excerpts from various albums including cuts from Epicloud, Deconstruction, Synchestra and Ziltoid the Omniscient. So musically, a typical show. Visually however, something quite different. The production is extremely ambitious; Steve Vai appears on a giant video screen to narrate the story as Townsend and company open the show with three from Epicloud; "Lucky Animals" where the stage is invaded by slinky dancing "cat girls," "True North" and a, well, effervescent take on "Effervescent" made all the more heavenly by Townsend's employment of group vocals in the form of a church choir. But that's just the warm up; soldiers march on stage and fight it out with each other with guns that shoot steam during "War," girls twirl on long scarves that dangle from the ceiling throughout "Vampolka" while others use grinders to shoot showers of sparks across the stage on various songs. As album title Retinal Circus implies, it's all quite a feast for the eyes. Perhaps sensing that the Cirque du Townsend is a little over-stimulating, the show's ringmaster tones it down a bit for the show's second half, performing an acoustic version of "Hyperdrive," "Ih Ah" as a stunning duet with guest singer Anneke Van Giersbergen and "Where We Belong" and "Detox" all without theatrics. And while there are more on-stage shenanigans as Harold resolves his inner conflicts, the remainder of the show is more geared to showcasing the music. Townsend has his trademark ear-to-ear grin in place throughout the show and no doubt most viewers of this film will have the same.

Get it here.

Devin Townsend - Retinal Circus
Rating:

Share this article

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google+ Pin it Share on Reddit email this article

More articles for this artist .