Periphery IV: Hail Stan Tracklist:
Garden In The Bones
It’s Only Smiles
Follow Your Ghost
Reviewed by Mitch Charlton
Everyone who listens to Periphery knows of their technical prowess and their incredible musicianship. For all of you newcomers, pull up a chair and grab a pen and pad, you’re about to learn a thing or two from this album.
First off, bands who come under the ‘progressive’ umbrella of our genre some times like to show off their skills and create a mess of solos or incredibly technical riffs that will have the listener trying to figure out where it begins and where it ends. Periphery have an absurd amount of talent when it comes to their craft but their music has always had a rocking riff at the front and then added their technical edge to it afterwards, they apply what the song needs, not what their egos need.
Starting off your album with a 17-minute track is a bold move on any bands part but Reptile hatches into a masterful arrangement. This song doesn’t get boring, it does have a 3 part feel to it though that begs the question as to whether it could have been separated, it isn’t, it’s one and you should listen to the entire song. The ending riff will have you headbanging and begging for more.
Spencer’s vocals are always outstanding and crystal clear to listen to. He is probably one of my favourite vocalists. He has a great clean singing voice that cuts through the music and sits at the front of the mix. Then he comes out with an aggressive scream that picks up the vibe of Periphery’s sound and brings out the demons in the music. Check out the difference in his styles for the two singles released Blood Eagle and Garden in the Bones. Picking singles to release off an album must be a hard choice, this is the first glimpse for the world to hear what you have been working on and the sound you are wanting to show. The two songs chosen are a good representation for this album, Blood Eagle will turn a few heavier listening ears their way to check HAIL STAN out and Garden in the Bones starts off mellow and clean and slowly you start to see those bones showing through the flowers and it gets darker towards the end.
Crush is an interesting song, it stands out from the rest because it’s more a dance/electro vibe with no guitars, huge orchestral backing and an incredibly catchy chorus. I have had it stuck in my head all week. It may throw a few listeners out that aren’t used to that style of music but we’re here to keep an open mind.
The mixing of HAIL STAN is just as calculated as their writing process. Listening to this album you can hear everything that Periphery are trying to accomplish. All instruments are crystal clear, 3 guitars, bass, drums and vocals. Whichever part of the music you are wanting to focus on with your listen, you can, they have made it too easy for you. Adam Nolly Getgood’s signature bass tone is one for all bassists to have a listen to and take note from this band, somehow, he has a slightly distorted bass tone but manages to keep it distinguishable from the guitars and it doesn’t get lost within the mix.
Periphery IV: HAIL STAN is definitely an album for anyone that hasn’t listened to Periphery before to give a shot, also for anyone that is wanting an easy transition into the progressive territory or if you’re lifelong fan already, I’m hoping you’ve already listened to the album and are just checking out the review to see what other people think.
Here’s hoping that Periphery comes back to Australia whilst touring this album, HAIL STAN!
Periphery IV: HAIL STAN was out April 5 on with Roadrunner Records. You can order here
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