Devin Townsend Reveals New Backing Band

Devin Townsend has revealed the backing band that will be joining him at his upcoming shows. They include: Ché Aimee Dorval (Casualties Of Cool) on vocals/guitar, Morgan Ågren (Kaipa) on drums, Mike Keneally (Dethklok) on guitar, Markus Reuter (Stick Men) on ambient guitars, Nathan Navarro on bass, and Diego Tejeida (Haken) on keyboards. Townsend will also be joined by a choir featuring Samantha Preis, Anne Preis, and Arabella Packford.

Townsend commented:

“There have been only a few times throughout my career that I can safely say I’ve taken a chance as big as I’m about to take with these new touring plans. But I believe that to not take a chance on something as important to me as this can only lead to creative stagnation.

It is with profound gratitude that I can announce this next tour. To be joined by musicians of this caliber, as well as crew and sound design of such a level, is something I am truly humbled by. As one who has been working professionally my whole career to be able to be allowed to pull something like this off, I really can’t say ‘thank you’ enough to everyone involved.

This is a quantum leap for me, and it’s a situation that I have been very proactive in choosing a group of individuals and setlist for.

I am thrilled and honoured to be joined on these next tours by drummer Morgan Ågren, guitarist Mike Keneally, Ambient guitarist Markus Reuter, keyboardist Diego Tejeida – d’Tej, singer and guitarist Ché Aimee Dorval, bassist Nathan Navarro, as well as a three person choir comprised of Samantha and Anne Preis, and Arabella Packford.

This will be without a net. No backing tracks, no clicks, a lot of room for improvisation, and every possible avenue through musicians and production of high caliber for new and interesting things to be possible each night.

Though this is the first of my upcoming plans for touring, and I don’t want to be limited in the future, my gut feeling is that this will be a truly unique and fascinatingly colourful organization that will yield wonderful things. I truly hope it can be received well enough to be brought to a lot of different territories.

In a wonderful turn of events, the tour is selling out quickly, so please don’t delay and miss the opportunity to see this unique band.

Thank you again for allowing me to do these sorts of things. Truly.

Devin Townsend“

As previously reported, Townsend has a European tour booked with Haken.

Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger, Steve Vai, Etc. To Guest On Devin Townsend’s New Album “Empath”

Devin Townsend has revealed that Chad Kroeger (Nickelback), Steve Vai, Anneke Van Giersbergen, and Che Dorval (Casualties of Cool) have all guested on his new album “Empath.” Previously announced guests include: Elliot Desgagnés (Beneath The Massacre), Mike Keneally (Dethklok, etc.), Morgan Ågren (Kaipa), Sam “Samus” Paulicelli (Decrepit Birth), etc. The album is expected to be released in March.

Townsend said the following in a series of tweets:

“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’”

Devin Townsend Offers Updates Regarding Who He Has Been Recording With & His Future Touring Plans

Devin Townsend has taken to Twitter to offer some updates on his upcoming projects and touring. You can check out a number of tweets, many of which focus on his new album “Empath,“ below. It’s worth noting that he has been working with all of the following musicians: Mike Keneally (Dethklok, etc.), Morgan Ågren (Kaipa), Anup Sastry (ex-Skyharbor, etc.), Nathan Navarro, and Sam “Samus” Paulicelli (Decrepit Birth)

[via The PRP]