An Evening with Devin Townsend (Brisbane, Qld)

11 September 2019 at The Old Museum

It was on such an auspicious night that we found ourselves at the beautiful and haunted Old Museum in the heart of old Brisbane. An evening with the talented Devin Townsend was before us, the perfect distraction from the terror of the date – an evening full of love and hope for mankind.

Once seated in the darkened Concert Hall of the Old Museum we were treated to a very close and intimate setting with the man himself. It was Devin Townsend stripped bare, casual, but the man nevertheless with his signature effects through a modest selection of technology. He started gentle and very soon his comedy came through in the casual presentation of the show and his attempts to involve a mostly awestruck audience. The set, much like his long and varied career, leapt from the loving to the brutal and featured renditions of Why?, Ih-Ah!,and Love?, dispelling any misgivings about playing metal acoustically.

In the intermission Devin Townsend sat down and answered some of our questions. As an artist it was inspiring and informative to hear someone explain so eloquently their creative process across so many projects both old and new, and what art means to him as the artist and to the audience.

After a short break the second half of the show began, an even more laid back and intimate experience. He began with a cover of a song from Les Miserables and then played only a few more songs, preferring instead to answer the remaining questions we had posed for him. This treated us to insights about technique, to what exactly he does to achieve that signature echoed sound, and involved a rather intimate audience interaction with a gift of a Shofar.

The show at the Old Museum ended with Devin Townsend playing one last song, Life. Fitting, as it encapsulated an intimate and comedic evening where hope and love was shared all round. This was Devin Townsend distilled to his essence with all the rage and power of his phenomenal voice under the control of a man who has finally learnt what he mostly wants from existence. I’m glad I was there to experience it with him, to see what is possible.


Line-up: Devin Townsend

Reviewer: William Ferguson