I bought this album for my kid cousin when it first came out. She liked Enter Shikari, MCR, and other so called emo bands, and gut feel was it would be a good fit. She loved it.
A couple of months later my instinct was telling me to get this album even though I'm not a fan of the music she liked, and hadn't heard a song or seen reviews, but eventually I gave in and bought it. The last time I did that was in the 90's when I picked up Afghan Whigs masterpiece, Gentlemen. This decision was as good as that one.
I play my favourite albums to death, until I don't fancy listening to them any more, as the mystique stripped away leaves them ordinary. This goes for classics Nevermind, Stone Roses debut and Definitely Maybe. They just don't hold the depth they did, yet I still love them all, just not in the same way.
The Devil... is different. It is a rare album that keeps that aura, no matter how many times listened and dissected, no matter how many times you find meanings behind the songs. It just carries that magic. From the build up of Sowing Season, it just impresses with every track. Jesus Christ is beautiful, without failing to leave me reflecting on questions I won't ever really understand. Limousine breaks your heart. "I love you so much, do me a favour don't reply" is emotive enough before you understand what is really being sung about.
You Won't Know and Not The Sun let adrenaline loose inside me, though are usurped by The Archers, which shudders my chest at every punch of the chorus, every time "free-eezing over hell".
For me though, the finest song on the album is Degausser. It tempts you, coerces you, takes you, then drags you on a journey with control, venom, despair, loss, passion, self loathing and anger. It has to be played loud, and when the song closes with "the storm is coming in", you are left exhausted but better for the experience. It is cathartic.
The Devil is without doubt a masterpiece.