During a recent interview with The Metal Meltdown, Devin Townsend was asked about the possibility of a Strapping Young Lad reunion. He responded by saying it’s “not worth sacrificing to go back to a time when [he] wasn’t happy.”
Townsend said the following:
“The answer to that is… I’ve said it a thousand times, so I’m sure if there are people who really don’t know, they don’t care enough to pay attention.
I do understand the question, and I do understand why it’s asked — I really do. But I’ve gotta be careful with the answer because you don’t wanna… I think it’s easy to get so irritated by the question that you end up being flippant about it, and you end up being insulting to people when the question is coming from a place of people really, really like it and they really want it.
So I’ll say this: the same thing that made STRAPPING work so well when I was 25, whether or not you think ‘Lightwork’ is worth a shit or ‘The Puzzle’ is worth a shit, it’s the same process. So the same thing that yielded that is the same thing that yielded this. And the only reason STRAPPING existed back then is because I was being true to myself. It’s the only reason, because back then that was my truth.
The process of making this music is rooted in trying to unfuck myself as I get older, because when I was younger I had a lot of issues. So if people really love something that happened at any point in my career, whether or not it’s ‘Empath’ or STRAPPING or ‘Ziltoid’ or ‘Epicloud’ or anything, then my hope is that they would understand that the thing that they probably appreciated about it is it’s coming from a place of honesty. And if I can’t be honest about something, the thing that people will like about it will not be there. Absolutely. And I would prefer to be disliked for what I am than to be loved for what I’m no longer.
STRAPPING is a huge part of my life — was a huge part of my life — and I love all those guys and I still talk to them. However, the nature of what I did made it such that the lessons that I needed to learn from that period of my life were reflected in the content. And now it’s not a part of my life in a way that I can relate to, and more so it’s not a part of my life in a way that I have any desire to go back to.
There’s gonna be a certain amount of people that would hear that and they’d be, like, ‘Yeah, he’s said that before. I get it. I love the band, but I get it. I can respect that.’ There’s gonna be a certain amount of people that are just, like, ‘Fuck that guy. What he needs to do is do that ’cause it’s the only thing he’s ever done that’s worth a shit and everything else sucks. ‘ and there’s gonna be another part that just says, ‘STRAPPING who?’ But for me, brother, I’m just, like… As hard as this is to say, because it’s been such a weird couple of years, I’m pretty happy with where I’m at as a dude, and that’s not worth sacrificing to go back to a time when I wasn’t happy.”