“Periphery II: This Time It’s Personal” is not a bad album by any means. Actually, it’s pretty fucking good. Right now I would place it on my top 10 list. From start to finish their isn’t a lackluster moment and there is always something new going on to keep you interested and waiting to hear what happens next. Be it crazy guitars, soaring vocals into deep guttural growls, keyboard hooks that you want to groove to, or just entire songs in general every moment on this album is a victory. I don’t know if it is the nerd element from Periphery, the RPG song titles, the fact that I can see them loving my favorite game ever: Final Fantasy VII, or the fact that their music is FUN but something they do really sticks with me.
The opening song “Have A Blast” really sets the trend for the rest of the album. After the very powerful opener “Muramasa” that is. Have a Blast is one of those great opening songs that lets you know this album is going to be: a fucking blast!
I don’t understand how people label them as djent, this is far more progressive than nay djent you are ever going to hear. Songs like “Make Total Destroy” might have that sound, but there is so much underlying what is going on that it would take a moron to label them anything other than progressive. I mean god damn they got John Petrucci to guest on “Erised” which is no doubt a Dream Theater inspired song and one of the best on the album.
Spencer Sotelo may not have the best voice in metal but he has a lot of range and emotion that so many people in the genre do not. He can scream, yell, growl, and sing and he uses them at the exact right times to convey all the emotion that the music needs. Where Misha Mansoor and Mark Holcomb may be the best young guitar duo in the genre today playing a long with the technical prowess of drummer Matt Halpern and the driving bass of Adam Getgood(best name in metal? Hey Adam when are you going to get good at bass? ZING!) All the musicians seem to feed off of each other which really have helped develop a trademark sound for the band. Songs like “FacePalm Mute” and “Scarlet” to me are stand out tracks that showcase all that every member has to offer.
One of the best albums of the year so far and a band that has really developed since their debut, cementing their sound and band members should help them continue to create epic music for years to come. If this is what djent sounds like, then every other band in the genre needs to take a step back and rethink what they are doing!