Children of Bodom, Devin Townsend, Obscura, Septicflesh | House of Blues | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Children of Bodom, Devin Townsend, Obscura, Septicflesh All Ages Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard

When: Wed., July 6, 5:30 p.m. 2011

One is advised to take a deep breath before attempting to describe the achievements of guitarist, vocalist, producer, and supragenius Devin Townsend, or else it all might tumble out as one big run-on sentence. Townsend, late of Strapping Young Lad, not only plays like he has the hands of a Hindu god, he's developed a remarkable production style that accomodates his profligate playing with taste and grace—not one note goes to waste in his dense, elaborately multitracked heavy prog. It's a tall order to make one record like his in a year, but Townsend has just completed a tetralogy. In 2009 he released Ki and Addicted a few months apart, both on his own Hevy Devy label; they're concept albums about addiction and redemption, though it's hard to believe Townsend ever had time for a drug problem. This year's brand-new simultaneous releases, Deconstruction and Ghost, are just as rich and varied—and just as "wildly uncool," to quote one of Townsend's recent tour videos. Deconstruction is darkly funny, like Dante's Inferno rewritten for the Adult Swim crowd, and swings shamelessly from crushing and symphonic to silly and adolescent; Ghost is soulful and beautiful, and almost sounds like the new age album that its cover art would lead you to expect—it's just not quite actually soothing. Plus both records have a sexy, almost industrial throb that marks them out as rare specimens of prog metal that exist below the waist. —Monica Kendrick

Price: $30, $27 in advance

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