platypusfool wrote:I can sort of (only sort of) see what the original poster is saying. I see AE on the same sort of level as Physicist... they are both incredible, amazing, emotionally involving records that show, in places, Devin's strengths just as much as any of his records. Compared to nearly any other artist they are mindblowing. However, neither compare favourably with anything else he's done (apart from the SYL records IMO, but these stand out on the grounds of sheer brutality, which is enough for them), and cannot reach the level of the transcendental trio of Terria, Ocean Machine and Infinity. Those three albums are just so unbelievably fantastic that of course any record Dev releases must be compared to them, and of course AE cannot stack up.
This is not to say that the 'magic' is gone though - listen to 'Storm' as you reach the top of a hill in gale force winds and you'll feel that magic - it's just that Dev's work will never be quite as astounding unless he matches, or exceeds, the achievements he's made before. We can but hope this happens.
Just about exactly what i think too, compared to other bands, physicist and AE are masterpieces, but they are nowhere near the "transcendental trio" as you like to call them, because... well, lets face it, how is it possible to come up to that standard again? I find that hard to believe... it feels more like Phycisist and AE are albums made by someone trying to make Devin Townsend music and doing it damn well, but you know that it isnt Devin himself who is playing or something.