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PERIPHERY

Progressive Metal • United States


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Periphery biography
Periphery is an American progressive metal band from Bethesda, Maryland, formed in 2005.

History

Formation and Lineup Changes (2005 - 2009)

Periphery was formed by guitarist Misha Mansoor in 2005. He slowly gained a reputation on the Internet, primarily via a regularly-updated Soundclick account, Meshuggah and John Petrucci forums, and the sevenstring.org message boards. Before and during Periphery?s tenure in the metal scene, Mansoor developed a reputation for doing his own audio production, the majority of which was performed with a home computer and a Pod XT during this period. Mansoor has continued to update his personal project, Bulb, which preceded Periphery, often transferring songs between the two projects. Mansoor continues to be involved in a number of other musical projects.

Between 2005 and 2009, Periphery worked with vocalists Jake Veredika, Casey Sabol and Chris Barretto, gradually moving from a nu metal-influenced sound to a more experimental style, with a focus on innovative production. In 2009, the band announced via their MySpace blog that they had signed a one record deal with Sumerian Records, on which they would release their debut full-length album.

Periphery has toured extensively since 2008, supporting artists including DevilDriver, Emmure, Veil of Maya, Animals as Leaders, God Forbid, The Dillinger Escape Plan and Fear Factory.

Spencer Sotelo and Self-titled Debut (2010 onward)

In January 2010, Sumerian and Periphery set the release of the band?s self-titled debut album to April 20, 2010, set to be distributed by Sumerian Records in the United States, Distort Records in Canada and Roadrunner Records in Australia and the rest of the world. On January 20, 2010, amid swirling speculation that they had changed vocalists again, Periphery uploaded an album sampler featuring vocals by Spencer Sotelo, who was later announced to be Periphery?s new vocalist. The band later clarified via their MySpace blog that the split with Barretto had not been acrimonious. Barretto continues to sing in metal band Haunted Shores, a project composed of Mansoor and Mark Holcomb. On April 8, 2010, Periphery posted a new track, ?Insomnia? on their Myspace page, as well as announced a tour of Australia in support of The Dillinger Escape Plan.

Periphery (2010)

Periphery released their self-titled debut album, Periphery, through Sumerian Records on April 20th, 2010. It debuted at #128 on the Billboard...
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Periphery official website

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Buy PERIPHERY Music


Juggernaut: OmegaJuggernaut: Omega
Sumerian Records 2015
Audio CD$7.09
Juggernaut: AlphaJuggernaut: Alpha
Sumerian Records 2015
Audio CD$3.99
ClearClear
Sumerian 2014
Audio CD$6.27
$3.99 (used)
PeripheryPeriphery
Sumerian Records 2010
Audio CD$8.13
$6.56 (used)
Periphery II: This Time It's PersonalPeriphery II: This Time It's Personal
SUMERIAN RECORDS 2012
Audio CD$6.67
$5.04 (used)
IcarusIcarus
Sumerian Records 2011
Audio CD$3.56
$2.29 (used)
Periphery 2Periphery 2
Sumerian Records 2012
Vinyl$19.35
$19.65 (used)
Juggernaut: Alpha / OmegaJuggernaut: Alpha / Omega
Import
Imports 2015
Vinyl$50.99
PeripheryPeriphery
Import
Indie Europe/Zoom 2010
Audio CD$11.58
Clear (EP) by Periphery [Music CD]Clear (EP) by Periphery [Music CD]
Century Media
Audio CD$25.61
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PERIPHERY shows & tickets


  • Juggernaut Tour on 2 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 3 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 4 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 6 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 7 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 8 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 9 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 11 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 12 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 13 Feb 2015
  • Juggernaut Tour on 14 Feb 2015
  • Periphery on 26 Feb 2015
  • Periphery at ??? ????????, ?????-????????? on 27 Feb 2015
  • Periphery at Volta Club, Moscow on 28 Feb 2015
  • Periphery on 2 Mar 2015
  • Periphery at Tele-Club, ???????????? on 3 Mar 2015
  • Chaos In The Skies on 5 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Substage, Karlsruhe on 6 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Z7 Konzertfabrik Pratteln, Pratteln on 7 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Live Club, Trezzo sull'Adda, Milan on 8 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Backstage, München on 10 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Arena, Vienna on 11 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project on 12 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Majestic Music Club, Bratislava on 13 Mar 2015
  • DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT - Chaos in the Skies Tour 2015 on 14 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Stodola, Warszawa on 16 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Grünspan, Hamburg on 17 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at VoxHall, Århus C on 18 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Rockefeller, Oslo on 19 Mar 2015
  • Devin Townsend Project + Shining + Periphery at Rytmikorjaamo, Seinäjoki on 21 Mar 2015

PERIPHERY discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

PERIPHERY top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.63 | 75 ratings
Periphery
2010
3.74 | 46 ratings
Periphery II: This Time It's Personal
2012
2.46 | 4 ratings
Juggernaut: Alpha
2015
3.75 | 4 ratings
Juggernaut: Omega
2015

PERIPHERY Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

PERIPHERY Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

PERIPHERY Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

PERIPHERY Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.21 | 14 ratings
Periphery (Instrumental)
2010
4.13 | 8 ratings
The Icarus Lives EP
2011
4.75 | 4 ratings
Passenger
2012
4.17 | 6 ratings
Make Total Destroy
2012
2.90 | 13 ratings
Clear
2014

PERIPHERY Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Juggernaut: Alpha by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2015
2.46 | 4 ratings

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Juggernaut: Alpha
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Gallifrey

2 stars Periphery, for me, have always been a 'guilty pleasure' band. They're fun, at times, and I can sure sing along loudly to 'Scarlet', because that [&*!#]'s hella catchy, but the moment anyone starts talking about them as 'progressive' and 'thinking man's metal', I have to hold my breath to stop from bursting out laughing. And this happens often. Periphery are a band who combine sugary melodies that could be in Britney Spears songs with a bit of polish, with br00tal chug chug breakdowns and screams, with some ~trendy~ electronic bleeps and bloops, with lyrics that are half pseudo-deep pretentious nonsense and half meme-seeking gimmickry. And just because their guitar leads follow absolutely no time or groove or melody or key, that suddenly makes them compositional geniuses? Nope, this is pop music, plain and simple. And sometimes, they make some pretty nice pop music.

But I'll take an aside first to talk about this release - more specifically, why the [%*!#] is this a double album? Don't get me wrong, the rockist inside me loves this - two disks, separate covers and titles, both about 40 minutes (the length of a 70's LP), and both with perfect split points for each side of the record. Fantastic, just how it should be. But then, Periphery decide to release them as separate albums, and then tell us 'you should be listening to both one after each other, to get the full story'. No. No, no, no. No, no, no. That's not how it [%*!#]ing works. You split into two disks when you don't want people to listen to it all at once. You know, like Have One on Me or Grace for Drowning. Both artists agreed that listening to it all at once would become a bit boring, so split the albums conveniently into short pieces. Here, Periphery have just done it because they want more money from their legions of 12-year-old followers (who actually legitimately purchased Periphery 'Keep Calm'' and Dolan shirts. Yes, Dolan, that uber-[&*!#]ty maymay that was making the rounds in late 2012). So instead of doing what they want, I'm not going to listen to this at the same time. I actually haven't heard Omega yet. This is a review of Alpha, which is what you should get when you release things as two disks.

This is Periphery's first bad album. Well, not really, I'm obviously ignoring their rather pathetic debut record. But that was really just Misha (the worst member of the band in terms of compositional input) making bedroom chugs that the rest of the band had to work around. This is the first bad Periphery album, with them producing material as a group. This Time It's Personal was messy, overlong, and contained some real stinkers, but was also devilishly catchy, and had some not too shabby stuff courtesy of Mark Holcomb and Spencer Sotelo (and Matt Halpern would get a mention too if it weren't for the piss-poor drum tones on that album). Even Clear had its moments, as a watered-down version of This Time It's Personal. This? It runs the dreaded line of sincerity way too hard, producing some truly laughable parts in which the band attempts to juxtapose some pretty deep ('deep') lyricism and concepts over some pretty childish musical passages. Even the parts I liked from their sound in the past have taken serious knocks this time around, with the album being rather devoid of strong hooks (there are hooks here, just they are all pretty weak), and even their best asset, Spencer Sotelo, wavers a bit with some weak performances.

'Psychosphere' is nearly good, for a few minutes. The guitar is poor and there are some rather corny chanted vocals in the background, but if you focus on Spencer's cleans and the backing synths and textural guitars, it's actually pretty cool. And for once, that wall of ambience that djent bands so often utilise sounds powerful and full rather than like a cheap soup of casios and reverb guitar. I can sense Mark Holcomb's influence in this song, given the pseudo-black metal tonality of those tremolo riffs in the background, and overall it makes a pretty nice mid-saga climax to the album. Pity about the godawful bass solo break and those rather bad cookie-cutter metalcore screams.

And there are other good moments on here, it's just that the bad drowns out the good, and whenever one instrument is playing something nice, three others are playing something awful. 'The Scourge', for the first three minutes, is the first time I've heard a heavy Periphery song that doesn't suck, with them getting some real grit into the performances and riffs here, without leaving melody behind. But, as we all predicted, it quickly dissolves into a good old fashioned chug-fest, complete with more metalcore screams. Sigh. 'Heavy Heart' is the other good one here, although I will say that my enjoyment of it is purely ironic. This is possibly the sappiest song I have ever heard. Ever. The first chorus sounds straight off a Britney Spears record, and even though I love pop Periphery, even that was a bit too much for me. Fortunately, the second chorus of the song is much better, but the improvements in the song aren't enough to counter the pure cheese. 'Alpha' is an odd one, with most of the song being pure pop metal nonsense, halfway between Disturbed and Abba, but the chorus goes further beyond that to the point when it's actually kinda catchy and good.

But the entire album is riddled with moments of garbage, and I'm not just referring to the regular inclusions of chug-chugs and Spencer's metalcore vocals. Things like the acoustic break in 'MK Ultra' or the chiptune parts in the title track. Why? What does this add to the music aside from cheap gimmick points from your fandom of 12-year-olds who like cheap gimmicks? But the most disappointing part of this album for me is how poor Spencer's vocals are. Everyone else has been going on for years about how bad his voice is, but aside from the metalcore screams, I always loved it. He has some serious pipes and can belt out some truly delicious earworms at times. Here, he misses far more than he hits. The entire opening track, which wouldn't be half bad on its own, is filled with poorly done vocal performances. Some are weak lines, some are done with some absolutely terrible accentuation, and some are actually just plain off-key. The accentuation becomes a big problem throughout the album, with Spencer trying his hand at some bad Claudio Sanchez-isms with the clean sections.

Musically Periphery are pretty much the same as they've always been, smothering every single part with as many riffs as possible, because the band members' egos are so big that they can't just play chords. I'm exaggerating of course, there are some parts in which the guitars are reasonable and well played, but once every two songs isn't enough for me. But Periphery's bad moments in the instrumentals shine out a bit more clearly on this record than ever. The two biggest offenders being 'MK Ultra' and 'Four Lights', with the latter being a completely unnecessary instrumental chug-fest competition of who can get the worst guitar tone, and the former being just a plain competition of who can write the worst song of all time. I've heard tales of the band saving their best riffs for this album, that a whole lot of the ones that should have been on This Time It's Personal were left off in favour of being on here, because they were so good. When I hear the opening riff of 'MK Ultra', I get seriously confused. Yeah guys, that's the best riff you could come up with. That combination of 0, 0 and 0 is the best riff for that situation. Right.

In the end the only times Alpha is good is when it goes beyond bad into a sort of post-ironic anthemic pop music kind of enjoyment. You only like it because of how stupidly cheesy it is. The bad here is certainly more potent than the good, and when you're making a super-deep concept album and your best asset is a bunch of sappy pop choruses, that's not really going to hold up all too well in the long run. I look forward to what Omega has for me.

4.9

Originally written for my Facebook page/blog: www.facebook.com/neoprogisbestprog

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 Periphery II: This Time It's Personal by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.74 | 46 ratings

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Periphery II: This Time It's Personal
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Pieromcdo

5 stars This is Djent Tech Prog this is more on they heavy side extreme prog with grunts voice and smooth one This is my favorite kind of prog ( probably a nice mirror of my brain will side this is going all over Wow Chris Baretto This guitar payer go they extra mile to impress me ( looking for music mcdo@bell.net )Barretto made about 10 albums of out standing recording on the name of Bulbs Wish he told me not good enough to Sale ??? Well l if you want different amazing Wild Go Go For working is my best moment to listen to Periphery And I produce

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 Clear by PERIPHERY album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2014
2.90 | 13 ratings

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Clear
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by AgostinoScafidi

2 stars I normally wouldn't waste my time or your eyes writing a bad review. I figure I'd leave the already existing reviews to speak for the record themselves but since I listened through the first two albums to get to this EP and my end result is me disliking ALL OF THEM, well I said "What the hell?" let me write a review about it. (Plus, there's only one other review for this EP at the moment!)

First of all, if you're a fan of this band, well you can go ahead and ignore my review altogether.

If you're a curious person like myself who stumbled upon this band from just hearing one good track, then heed my words and avoid this band's repertoire!

Those words may be strong... You might happen to like whiny emo-core vocals and decent instrumentation. It wasn't completely terrible though, I admit. There were some shining moments in the music department and I enjoyed the metal vocals (ie: screams).

However, on the whole the music is just kind of messy sounding, a little too trendy for my tastes, and the vocals pretty much ruined it for me.

Happy hunting!

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 Clear by PERIPHERY album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2014
2.90 | 13 ratings

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Clear
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Gallifrey

3 stars Transparently the Same

Ah, Periphery, my favourite band that I hate for the reason their fans love them, and love them for the reason their fans hate them. For those who don't know, I hate Periphery's instrumentals, but I love Spencer Sotelo's vocals.

Well, his clean ones at least, I'm still not really a fan of his screams, but I never really have warmed to harsh vocals, despite all the metal I listen to. I'll never understand why anyone holds the opposite opinion, Periphery's instrumentals are just so messy and ugly, and Spencer's clean vocals are just so catchy and melodious, but I know for a fact that I'm in the minority.

So I guess I've come to decide that my opinion on a Periphery release is directly proportional to the number of songs that Spencer gets a decent belt going on the vocals, and inversely proportional to the number of seconds in which we can hear the instruments, so I guess I'm pretty divided on this new Clear EP. And yes, Periphery, this is an EP, not a bloody 'experiment', because let's face it, there's absolutely nothing experimental in this. Yeah sure, the way they composed it is kinda cool, with one member getting the helm on a track each, but this is basically the same sound as This Time It's Personal, only less good, because there's less of Spencer being catchy.

I've got to admit though, I do like the Overture on this, at least for the parts when it's being melodic and cool and not djenty and repetitive. I feel it's honestly a bit short, however, and they oversold it by saying there are elements of every song in it, because I can't hear either of the great melodies in "Feed The Ground" and "The Parade of Ashes", but I admire their use of piano here in the intro, and it actually had me a bit more excited for this EP when I first heard it. The overture, although it contains some moments of Periphery's usual djentiness, is probably the first time I've actually enjoyed a Periphery instrumental part, but I'm almost definitely biased because piano is my favourite instrument.

Amongst the six main tracks of this EP, we have two instrumentals, one penned by lead man and founder Misha Mansoor, and the other by Nolly Getgood. Nolly's track, "Extraneous" is pretty inoffensive, I can't really complain or praise it, but Misha's track, which for some retarded reason is the longest here, is pretty much Periphery at their worst. The only thing that would make this worse is if Spencer was doing his metalcore scream all over this like they did on the debut. The guitar tone here is the djentiest on the EP, the riffs are the sloppiest, and the solos are awkwardly placed and strange sounding as usual.

But the other tracks, like on This Time It's Personal, are completely saved by Spencer and his fantastic clean vocals. Spencer's own track, "The Parade of Ashes", is naturally the least djenty, opting more for electronics and catchy pop-punk melodies, and it really just feels like the chugs are just there to fit the overall sound. The chorus is infectiously catchy, although the edgy lyrics and screams near the end nearly kill it. It's not quite as catchy, however, as the chorus from Matt's track "Feed The Ground", which is probably the catchiest thing the band has ever done. Unfortunately, the rest of "Feed The Ground" is possibly the heaviest this record gets, dissolving regularly into straight metalcore, and although the regular inclusion of the chorus saves it, I can't really feel most of the track.

The other two tracks, "The Summer Jam" by Jake Bowen and "Pale Aura" by Mark Holcolm both feature large clean segments from Spencer, but neither of them have the hooks that the other tracks have, making them fall into mediocrity a bit. "The Summer Jam" has a nice vocal part for the verse, but there's a little background riff that really gets on my nerves, probably because of the striking similarity with Kanye West's "Gorgeous".

Clear is a nice little EP from Periphery that more or less continues what This Time It's Personal began, although as usual, I find Periphery's music less that enjoyable unless Spencer is singing at the top of his lungs. I'm sure the fanboys will find something to rave about here, but this isn't a significant release for these guys, I'm hoping their next full length is a bit more.

6.1

Originally written for my Facebook page/blog: www.facebook.com/neoprogisbestprog

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 Periphery II: This Time It's Personal by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.74 | 46 ratings

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Periphery II: This Time It's Personal
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Puppies On Acid

3 stars When the album started it had one of the most epic intros I have heard in a while, though it kind of tailed off towards the end of the track, I was hopeful though that this sophomore effort from this progressive metal band would be better than their first album. Well all I can say is this album pisses me off. The first 2 tracks are quite excellent, but then the band pretty much loses me for the next 7 tracks. Not that they are terrible songs, there are some amazing parts throughout each of these 7 tracks, but then there are sections that just derail the entire song and throws off the groove they had going. Then you get to track 10, Erised, and here you see the mind-blowing potential this band has. This is easily the best song on the album. The final 4 tracks have more of the inconsistencies. So what you have here is 1 amazing song, 2 great songs and then a roller coaster of music that will soar for one minute and then cut you down at the knee-caps the next. I wanted to love this album from the word go, but to me its just a little inconsistent, but don't take my word for it, perhaps other people just get it more than I do.

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 Periphery II: This Time It's Personal by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.74 | 46 ratings

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Periphery II: This Time It's Personal
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Gallifrey

4 stars Hook, Line, No Sinker

I've noticed something I do when I'm listening to Periphery. It's probably not something many of their other fans do, but from my impressions, Periphery's fanbase aren't the most intelligent or interesting bunch. When I listen to a Periphery song, especially from this album, I subconsciously filter the instrumentation, and focus entirely on Spencer's vocal parts. It's strange, because many, many people do the opposite, and so often Periphery have been asked to provide instrumental versions. But I just can't afford to have this barrage of murderous noise affect my enjoyment of the great melodies that Spencer manages to come up with.

Lets be honest, Periphery have some of the worst and messiest instrumentals I have ever heard. It's not just the farty 'djent' tone that they seem to still have an obsession with, it's also the masses and masses of parts that don't seem to blend with each other, it's the strange need they have for putting riffs everywhere, where maybe there should be chords or textures, but they just chug everywhere and everywhen. There's no doubt that these guys are incredibly talented. Some of them, I even have some respect for. Matt Halpern is undeniably an incredibly versatile drummer, he can play nearly every style of metal drumming with flair and technicality (although his kit tone is pretty terrible), and I also have respect for him as an entrepreneur and businessperson, with his music lesson business and drum clinics (although I wish they weren't so expensive), and then there's Nolly, their new British bassist, who is one of my favourite producers ever. He has produced some of my favourite underground rock records, like Natural Tendency and The Holographic Principle, but I just wish I could find some respect for him as a bassist.

I'm generally not a fan of this kind of music, as my opinions on Animals as Leaders and the like should prove, and it's why I hate it being called 'progressive metal', because I never know if an album is the great progressive metal that I love, or this messy and unoriginal style of making me cringe. Yet, above all that, I still enjoy Periphery's music, and as I mentioned before, it's almost entirely down to their vocalist, Spencer Sotelo. Sure, they have a good riff every now and then, like the lead riff of "Scarlet", or some of the stuff during "Ji" or "Luck As A Constant", but it's covered with that vomit tone and so much damn compression that I struggle to hear it. And even their atmospheres are bad, the pseudo-electronic tones they put in are just so dried up. But, I still enjoy them.

When you listen to the vocal parts over the instrumentals, you really have to gain some respect for what Spencer has to do. Listen to any of the parts, and imagine putting a vocal part over that. There are no chords, no melodies, not even many rhythms to base your part on, yet Spencer does it so flawlessly. And he does it, basically, by ignoring everything and just flying over the top. It doesn't mix with the music well at all, and maybe that's why so many people hate him, but at least his parts are good, unlike those guitar parts?

But seriously, pull the vocals from this album and I'd be struggling to give it a score above 3.5/10. The riffs are sloppy and without defined rhythm or key, and the solos are beyond awful. Shit, some of these solos are from skilled players, but they all sound so forced and out of place, like the band has gone "right, solo here and here and here" and then played some random string of notes. Take the track "Erised", which is one of the quieter ones (therefore the best), but both solos here just sound so unnatural and forced, especially the first one, coming straight out of a rather nice verse. The solos don't hold a melody or idea for their duration, they just play seemingly random notes in a random order. As much as I hate to praise someone like John Petrucci, at least his solo starts out well. Those first two or three arpeggios fit perfectly in with the music (although I'm not sure any of the last two minutes of "Erised" are necessary at all), but of course, being Petrucci, it dissolves into mindless wank within a few seconds.

But it's thoroughly impressive how Spencer and his incredible knack for an excellent hook keeps this album afloat so long. I'll be listening to a track, thinking "man, this one's pretty bad, I'll probably skip this next time", but partway through, Spencer just hits a groove and sings something so absolutely scrumptious that I have to go back and replay it. Take a song like "Have A Blast". The violin part at the intro is alright, but it quickly dissolves into some pretty hefty wank-core, and aside from a couple of nifty parts from Halpern (his sudden blast beat part is great), it's a pretty dismal track. But then?

"?and it's the thrill of life that enables us to grow. Locked in the spirit's line, souls entwine to journey on as one."

And then suddenly it's incredible. I've regularly used "Have A Blast" as an example of a track that goes from absolute trash to beauty within seconds. And it's not just the vocal line, during that segment I actually think the guitars finally fit with the vocals and the tone, creating a beautiful segment with a spine-chillingly good vocal melody.

But it's not a single moment. The number of times this happens during This Time It's Personal is ridiculous, nearly every song has some moment that redeems it from mediocrity, all of them from Spencer. The only real tracks that fail to have any moments I enjoy would be "Make Total Destroy" and the last four tracks, which I will usually pass on when giving this album a spin. I can honestly say that the only tracks I enjoy right the way through would be "Muramasa", "Scarlet" and "Erised", when Spencer is given enough front time to make a difference for the whole track. The melody from "Muramasa" is absolutely brilliant, and the thing that made me look into this album when the trailer was released (I didn't expect much after the debut), but both the times it is reprised, in "Ragnarok" and "Masamune", it feels weak and forced, and doesn't even save those tracks from mediocrity.

"Facepalm Mute" would probably be the worst track here, messier and more metalcore than everything else, but then the chorus hits, and "NEGLECT A SENSE OF IGNORANCE TO ALLTEEEER LIEEEEEESS" and suddenly it's fantastic. The hooks on this album are possibly the best I've heard in years.

"We are the dark, that feed upon the living in sooolid shadoooooawwwww"

"?if you love the guilt then let it die, a life left so clean. We'll measure the price of misery"

"It's noooot for meee to saywhatyouneedtobelieeeeve"

"SCARRRLEEEEEEEAAAAAAAATTTT"

This Time It's Personal is a record I love for basically the opposite of the reasons its fans love it, and I know that full well. I can see what the haters are saying, this is pretty bad, but I just can't say no to those hooks.

6.8

Originally written for my Facebook page/blog: www.facebook.com/neoprogisbestprog

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 Periphery by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.63 | 75 ratings

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Periphery
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by DisgruntledPorcupine

3 stars When my interest in djent began to rise rapidly, I was in the CD store and saw this album. I'd heard of it before from other djent fans and thought it might be of interest to me, so I decided to buy it, hoping this would increase my interest in the genre further.

Now the first thing I noticed upon looking at the albums booklet is that the band has three guitarists, something you don't often see. And boy can they ever play! The guitar playing is the focus of this album and a huge highlight as well, with the guitarists employing many different techniques into their playing to make it quite an interesting listen. In fact the musicianship all around is quite impressive.

Another good thing to note is the production, which fits the music pretty much perfectly. The riffs in this album are pretty fetching, especially on the track "Icarus Lives!", and the lyrics, while they may not be some peoples cup of tea, are also pretty well done.

Now there is one place the album falls flat on it's face for me: the vocals. The vocals get very tiresome, very fast, and can often make sitting through this one an ordeal. The harsh vocals are almost cringeworthy and the clean vocals tend to grate at moments. However I understand that not everyone has a problem with this, but there are many others who share my sentiment, so I guess it's very much a love/hate thing.

But all and all, a decent album. Definitely not for people who aren't a fan of technical music. Also, if you've heard Animals As Leaders before and you like them, this gives a similar sort of sound only with vocals. And if you can get past those vocals, you should love it. 3 stars in my book.

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 Periphery by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.63 | 75 ratings

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Periphery
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

4 stars 'Periphery' - Periphery (7/10)

The '00s may not have seen too many positive developments in music and metal in particular, but a rising trend in metal has been the 'djent' scene, a particular style of math metal pioneered by Meshuggah's palm-muted guitar work. One of the most popular bands in this style is the Maryland group Periphery, who had been promising a full-length debut to their fans for years before finally coming out with this self-titled debut. A very modern blend of metalcore and progressive influences, the album should certainly appeal to the 'djentlemen' that have so long awaited the release. Although the band's first full-length feels as if it drags on for far too long without enough meat on its bones, the album is an expertly produced piece of progressive metal.

In regards to variety here, there is not much to go around, but Periphery do what they do particularly well. Rhythmic experimentation and a constant thirst for throwing the same few muted chords into as many different time signatures as possible is what much of the band's music can be described as. There is more here to dig into however; additional mellow arrangements are layered overtop to give the music an ethereal quality to it, and the vocals of Spencer Sotelo are skilled, if anything. Through growls and clean vocals, the singer of this band can really belt out, and his modern style really makes me think that I'll be hearing alot more bands of this sound emerging in the next years.

The songwriting is generally quite good, although the vocal hooks and melody can feel often drowned out by the more 'djent' and mathematic aspects of the music. Each musician here is rock-solid in the execution, but as an album that crosses over the seventy minute mark, it doesn't feel like the band has the sound to make the journey consistently interesting. Instead, many of the songs sound quite alike as if treading the same territory of the one before it. That can really rob the album of its experimental flow, despite the album being an absolutely incredible listen if restricted to a few tracks.

'Jetpacks Was Yes', 'Icarus Lives!' and 'The Walk' are all winners here, whether for their added rhythmic madness or stronger melodic hooks. One important thing to mention here is the incredible production of the album. With the exception of the drums (which sound rather mixed out and underwhelming) the album has a very ethereal and spacey sound that really takes 'Periphery' a step above your typical mathcore act.

I cannot praise the great musicianship here enough, and as for songwriting, there is plenty of potential. However, Periphery still needs to clip some fat off of their act before making the masterpiece fans have been hoping for.

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 Periphery (Instrumental) by PERIPHERY album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2010
3.21 | 14 ratings

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Periphery (Instrumental)
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Negoba
Prog Reviewer

3 stars A Very Good Idea, Average Result

When I saw that Periphery had released an instrumental version of their debut album, I thought I had struck the motherlode. During 2010, I've been exploring the world of djent metal, and one of the underground legends of the scene is a guy that goes by the mysterious name of Bulb. He's actually an extremely average, studious looking fellow by the name of Misha Mansoor. He produced and help record the phenomenal Animals as Leaders album, and had been producing monstrously brutal djent on his soundclick site as Bulb for some time. Demos of his full band Periphery have been circulating for awhile, but to my ear there was a lot of great guitar playing by Bulb ruined by some pretty average metalcore vocals that didn't really get any better with a new singer. I dislike metalcore vocals pretty intensely in general, so...instrumental version...perfect, right? Some of the best djent out there is instrumental, and if it was anything like the AaL album, certainly we'd have something to get excited about.

As it turns out, the result is certainly an improvement, but an incomplete product. Some of the songs were actually constructed as instrumentals in the first place, but I believe others were intended to have vocals from inception. As a result, some songs on the instrumental version have some repetitive sections that were meant to support vocals. (I actually prefer this to what's on the real versions, but a vocal style that matched the intensity, virtuosity, and complexity of the music is really what is missing here.)

The other obvious thing that probably got in the way is that Misha Mansoor and Tosin Obasi are actually fairly distinct guitarists. Bulb's riffs are far more brutal, often as brutal as djent godfather Meshuggah's. For a lover of breakneck riffs, Periphery may have some of the best. IN addition, Bulb's lead style is a little more traditionally virtuosic. To an extent, the music is meant to cater to pure guitar fans. A song like "Zyglrox" had seen various forms on the interwebs before this "official" version and has always been an instrumental guitar feast. (Other have criticized it for being a mathematical technique orgy, but that's the point!) Bulb does not, however, possess the same sense of harmony or simple beauty that Obasi lends his project. This album is a gang of gents with billy clubs laying into a mouthy victim for an hour. Occasionally they stand up and take a breath, give each other some high fives, and then they begin again. As I said, if you like your metal brutal, without pity, and relentless, this is your album.

I would actually like to hear an intentionally instrumental Bulb album. (Along with probably every other djent fan out there). There, we might get something truly amazing. Still we have a good album perfect for working out to.

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 Periphery by PERIPHERY album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.63 | 75 ratings

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Periphery
Periphery Progressive Metal

Review by Pieromcdo

5 stars This is it ; these verry skill musicients (probably 8 cords guitare) have made a master piece of prog or DJENT they call it , technical prog is not for every one and it is the rares form of prog This album is just they ultimate of the genre before periphery this was BULB i have to say this is male stuff HA HA .The music is just squarling of spinning Accord that all work together with a semi grouth voice and regular at time . this is the future of the genre comming live to my here, me i simply love it dont forget this is extreme to, so .For fan of tech prog go for it

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