When was the last time that a band from the heavy music scene released a double album and why do artists no longer make this leap? These are also questions that the progressive metal heads in Periphery asked and then they darn well went and did it…
Before we delve into the review of the two albums ALPHA and OMEGA. With ALPHA, Periphery wanted to tell a story that starts with the “birth” of the main character on the first album and ends on the second with a few story twists. The concept behind JUGGERNAUT has been around for several years and is based on a series of demos the band have made over that period. Here we don’t just have a Metalcore album, but a really complex concoction in Periphery have managed to sustain an almost cult status with in their progressive scene. Unlike many bands from the Metalcore or Hardcore scene, JUGGERNAUT: ALPHA starts extremely calm and then leads the listener gently in. Of course all good stories need a good introduction.
Periphery deliver as usual a sublime progressive sound, while the vocals will ocassionally dip into the Scream / Shout–direction. Sound lovers will get real joy as with any album, Periphery‘s certain execution will leave nothing to complain about. There are also quieter tracks in which the guitarist can have fun and show his true talent, but then will do the complete opposite by vibrating the entire earth, such as on tracks like ‘Rainbow Gravity‘. This song is the absolute Prog–grenade and if Periphery only made music in the style of this song, then they would be the undisputed gods of the Progressive-metalcore scene. But the guys do this not only belong to a genre, but to widen it too. It is the mix of genres that is exactly this works for Periphery. The professionalism of the band ensures that the songs are well thought-out tracks, that are placed in a perfect order. With JUGGERNAUT: APLHA and JUGGERNAUT: OMEGA despite the length of both albums combined, the entire release is simply a well-crafted creation for which applause is encouraged.
After listening to the two albums, it does become clear why many artists decide to not publish double albums. Aside from the extra investment, many musicians do not want to tell a story, but rather provide a compact, easily relatable album. Periphery have done it a little different, but also appear to one of the few bands that have managed to pull this off successfully…bravo.