Hailing from Washington DC, Periphery is one of the freshest progressive metal acts on the scene today. With their signature blend of polymetric grooves and soaring melodies, the band continues to push the envelope of modern metal music. The Band released their first full length album ‘Periphery’ on April 20th in 2010. It debuted at #128 on the Billboard Top 200, as well as #2 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart. Their second studio album will be released 29th June via Roadrunner Records Australia titled “Periphery II”. Recently I spoke to vocalist Spencer Sotelo.
For the people that don’t know Periphery, could you please give us a quick introduction.
Yeah I’m Spencer and I sing for the band, we are a progressive metal band from Washington.
The band formed in 2005 but didn’t release a studio album until 2010, Misha started the band as a recording project, did a little demo in the bedroom and then put together a line up. The band didn’t actually start touring until 2009 and the album came out the year after that because we signed to Sumerian the year before.
The New album is Periphery II, coming out via Roadrunner Record in Australia. Do you have a personal favourite track off the album yet, and which track do you think the fans will react to the most?
Yeah I’d say “Ragnarok” for sure and the fans will probably react the the first song we’re going to release on the single called “Make Total Destroy” it has that driving force that Periphery has always had.
So Periphery has shared the stage with a few big names now including God Forbid, Darkest Hour, Dillinger Escape Plan, Fear Factory plus many more. In your own opinion who would you say is the most fun band you’ve shared the stage with?
My favourite tour so far was when we toured with Dream Theatre earlier this year in Europe, that was an amazing tour but if was to say the most fun tour overall, I would have to say it’s Protest The Hero hands down, those guys know how to have a good time (laughs), some of them know how to put the booze back and I like doing that. I made friends with one of them, Rody Walker, he can just put them away man.
I listened to your album very recently and your vocals really remind me of Mike Patton, do you take inspiration from him?
No, yeah, a little bit. I don’t take huge inspiration from a lot of vocals, I try and do my own thing and whatever comes out just comes out. I don’t try to sound like somebody.
Having said that, what is your most played record?
Let me pull up my iTunes list right now and I can give you an accurate… Oh you know what I’ve been listening to crazy lately is Jamiroquai, I’ve been listening to synkronized by Jamiroquai a shit load lately, probably not what you’d expect to hear but….
I read somewhere that you guys were going to do two releases this year, was the first release your single “Passenger” or did you plan on releasing two albums?
No, “Passenger” has nothing to do with the record. What we originally talked about doing was releasing this album and then a concept album in the same year, but we didn’t end up having the time to do it because we put so much time and effort into this album, we wanted to perfect it. Also we thought if we put out another release after this one, people wont have time to soak in this album and will forget about it. So we’re going to wait a little bit before we put anything else out.
Is “Passenger” a partially re-recorded version of the Haunted Shores song of the same name?
Yes, that is correct. It’s the same song, we hired Mark Holcomb who wrote all the Haunted Shores material and he writes awesome songs and awesome riffs. We’re not going to take all the old Haunted Shores songs, we felt like that one has all the elements and we released it in Europe. We never said anything about it being on the new album but everybody thinks it’s going to be on the new album which is a lie. It wasn’t even recorded in the same studio we recorded the new album in.
Can you give us your opinion about online audio streaming such as programs like Rdio, Spotify plus the browser based programs such as Soundcloud and how the internet is used as a marketing toll in both legal and illegal ways such as album leaking before release date.
I think it can be a good thing, you know there is not much money to be made in it but at the same time I feel like nobody really spends money on records. You don’t make money off record sales anyway but I think it’s a very cheap way for people to pay for music and the artist get a little bit from it. I think it’s a good thing overall but obviously there are positives and negatives to it.
What advice can you personally give to some of the younger Australian bands trying to break into the music industry?
Write music that doesn’t suck and you will succeed (we both laugh). That’s the best advice I can give someone trying to break into the music industry, don’t write something because you think it’s what somebody else wants to hear. You should be doing it because you love doing it and be true to what you feel like you should be writing.
What tours are coming up?
We have a small European run coming up, actually leaving on Thursday for Germany, playing two shows then heading out to the UK. After that we’re having a month break then off doing Summer Slaughter, that’s going to be amazing.
Coming to Australia?
Yeah there are a few things in the works, we’re talking about it and trying to set it up.
What did you do the last time you guys were here?
Well it was October or November last year I think.. I produce singers in my down time, a friend of mine produces bands and I produce the singers.
Busy man then, need to get onto some good Australian beers.
(Laughs) yeah I would love too.
Well to finish up, do you have any shout out you want to give?
Yeah, I would like to give a shout out to my good buddy Wes Hauch, he did a a guitar solo on our record and it came out amazing.
Periphery II comes out via Roadrunner Records 29th June 2012.
For the track list visit - http://killyourscene.info/periphery-announce-new-album-official-track-listing/