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Devin Townsend to reunite with Steve Vai at Starmus festival

Devin Townsend receives his Riff Lord award from Chris Jericho
Devin Townsend receives his Riff Lord award from Chris Jericho (Image credit: Will Ireland)

Devin Townsend and Steve Vai are to be reunited for the first time in 25 years at this month’s Stamus festival.

Townsend provided vocals on Vai’s 1993’s Sex & Religion album and co-wrote the tracks Pigs and Just Cartilage – and the pair will hook up again at the Norwegian event on June 18-23.

Townsend revealed the news at Monday’s Metal Hammer Golden Gods in association with Orange Amplification, where the Canadian musician received the iconic Riff Lord award from Fozzy frontman Chris Jericho.

Townsend tells eonmusic: “We’re doing one of my songs with an orchestra, and I’m singing with him for the first time in 25 years. I’m also playing some of his stuff, so I think, now that I’ve been elevated to Riff Lord, I may get a promotion!”

He added: “It’s a festival that’s based around physics and science and I really enjoy that. Being 45 years old, and sober, and having kids and all that, I really respect that sort of process.

“I really like the idea that something that is maybe stereotypically known as being a knuckle-dragging genre, is able to participate in things that are really beautiful like this and contribute to it.”

Vai was specially invited to participate at the festival in Trondheim by Queen guitarist Brian May, who sits on the event’s advisory board.

Vai will also be joined onstage by artists including Nuno Battencourt and Grace Potter.

Tickets are available directly through the festival website, while a trailer for Starmus 2017 can be seen below.

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Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.