Day 3: Heavy Devy

I didn’t really pay much attention to the dates on this particular trip. I knew I wanted to be in Europe during festival season (ie, summer) and thanks to my good friend Sam I knew New York City was a go for Christmas and New Year. But I’ve been very fortuitous with the way dates have fallen into place for me here, even if there was a bit of crappy luck (I was in England for the Royal Wedding – this is not a good thing – but got to Barcelona the day after the occupied Plaza de Catalunya was cleared out). I’m managing to get both Canadian and American Thanksgiving celebrations, for example, and Tony Benn was in London about a week before I escaped from there.

Touring bands aren’t really something I’ve paid attention to. Being not only from Australia (where bands don’t usually tour) but from Tasmania (where bands who do tour Australia don’t usually visit), tour schedules aren’t something I’ve really paid attention to. Which bit me in the arse a couple of times – if I’d stayed one more day in Edinburgh, I could have seen Wu-Tang Clan live, for example. I did get to see a few artists by pure right-place-right-time luck (Sufjan Stevens in London, The Nightwatchman in Vancouver).

Devin Townsend though, was almost… normal? I like Devin, and especially his recent four-album project (the quiet and folky Ki, the big poppy Addicted!, the extreme metal Deconstruction and the gorgeous, soft Ghost). I heard he was doing a North American tour, I checked the dates, realised he’d be in Seattle around the right time and bought a ticket. Holy crap, a semi-normal act!

The concert? Awesome. That Townsend is as charismatic and active as he is on stage while still performing complex guitar lines would be impressive enough before you consider his hilarious wit and ability to rip the piss out of everyone in the room (himself foremost). “Supercrush!” was amazing live. I really need to start wearing earplugs to gigs, though.

Fun trivia: The only non-Australian artist I have seen more than once is The Ocean, who I saw both here in Seattle opening for Devin Townsend, and in Slovenia. Naturally, they are from Switzerland.


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