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NICKELBACK's Chad Kroeger & STEVE VAI Among Guests on New DEVIN TOWNSEND Album, Empath

Posted by on December 3, 2018 at 1:43 pm

The guests just keep on coming for Devin Townsend's brand new album Empath. Townsend previously announced Mike Keneally (Dethklok), Morgan Ågren (KaipaCasualties of Cool), Anup Sastry (ex-SkyharborMarty Friedman), Elliot Desgagnés (Beneath The MassacreConflux), Nathan Navarro and Sam Paulicelli (Decrepit Birth) for the record, and now he's got some more.

According to a series of tweets from Townsend, the record will also feature Anneke Van Giersbergen (ex-The Gathering, Vuur, etc.), Che Dorval (Casualties Of Cool), Chad Kroeger (Nickelback) and Townsend's own ex-collaborator Steve Vai. Townsend says he has about another month's worth of work to do on the record and then he's all finished. There's also a small part of me that hopes Desgagnés and Kroeger appear on the same song, just for the sheer weirdness of that pairing.

Read the tweets below compiled into one long quote, courtesy of The PRP.

“No sleep tonight. I’ve got the final stages of this year long process rolling through my mind. Almost done…another 3.5 weeks and this stage of it (the album) will be wrapped up.

Listened to the roughs of Empath on the flight and it had me teared up the whole way. I haven’t had this visceral a reaction to the work in many years. To think It all stemmed from taking a vacation! my god, what an intense period this has been. I’ll remember this past two years.

Thanks to some further guests, Anneke Van Giersbergen, Che Dorval, Chad Kroeger, Mike Keneally, Steve Vai, Lords Of The sound orchestra… it’s been total catharsis and tied intrinsically to the process of working through this transformation. It’s a lovely, complicated, weird one

Some people will totally love it, a fair amount will take awhile to have it sink in, some won’t get it at all, some will definitely prefer the bonus disk or the previous work, but fuck me, did I ever need to get this out of my system. It’s like 12 years of vomit at once…

I had a choice to either go commercial or uncompromised on this. Thanks to Garth Richardson and Chad for convincing me to not compromise. It’s a hard choice as you get older because the temptation to play it safe is huge for the sake of family and security.

Exhausting… pure catharsis. It was about middle age, realization, fear, death, moderation, meditation, and overcoming the internal dialogues. I guess it was ultimately about getting it right after all these years, then kind of realizing that you just have to let it all go…

Music is just an expression of gratitude I think. Ultimately it’s just another album in a long line of albums, some will like it, some won’t. But it appears as if it will be accurate, and that’s a huge huge relief.

Three drummers, two bassists, orchestras, choirs, ducks, cats, goats, birds, whales… and I didn’t sabotage this one, for once…

Have to be at the studio in 3 hours after a sleepless night. Sweet. Luckily it’s not an immensely complicated mix 🙄

There’s a reoccurring theme on this project that seems to have appeared, and that seems to be one of ‘anti-suicide’”

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