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Periphery Explains "Mile Zero" Song Off New Album

After posting commentary on the song "Froggin' Bullfish," Periphery has now moved on to the track "Mile Zero" in the band's track-by-track commentary of new album "Periphery II." Misha Mansoor comments:

"This song started out as a very short soundclick demo. I had actually written all the parts that are in the demo in a Guitar Center whilst trying out the new Mesa Mark V which had just arrived, and sometimes you just get inspired by good sounding gear. The part I demoed ended up being the middle section of the song, and I remember being very intrigued by Mark's phrasing and style and was definitely letting that influence me (even though he wasn't in the band yet). This sat as a very short demo for a while because I just didn't have any other ideas for the song, and didn't want to force it. But when Mark joined up, I knew he and I would have to complete this since he was an influence on the writing. The first riff of the song was something that he had been jamming on for a while, and it is the perfect example of how a simple riff can be just as moving and powerful as a complex one if written just right. We started recording his ideas, and as I was writing riffs to add to his, I realized that my original Mile Zero ideas fit perfectly and fluidly moved the arrangement along. Before we knew it we had a complete song, and at that point Spencer started to demo some vocal ideas for the complete arrangement.

"When we heard his demos we knew that this song had to be on the album. It has a very different vibe from the other songs, and the arrangement is a lot more progressive than the beginning of the song might leave the listener to believe making it a pleasant surprise in my opinion. The finishing touch was Wes Hauch's solo. Wes is one of our best friends, and we have always told people that he is the best guitarist that people don't know about yet, we wanted show people why we believe that, and his solo is definitely one of my favorite moments of the album. Again we gave him no direction and just told him to do his thing, and he just went to town on that section. An interesting to note about the section that he solos over is that it is technically the beginning riff of the song, but with the downbeat in a different place.

"Before we ever recorded this song, Mark would jam on the riff, and that was where I heard the downbeat on the riff, but when we recorded it and Mark was playing it to a click, i realized the downbeat was in a completely different place, giving the riff a much groovier and swingy feel. We decided to have it go Mark's way first and mine second (which ended up being the solo section after the fact) and the intro riff is purposely introduced in a way that makes it a bit unclear as to where the actual downbeat is. Fun times!"

Mark Holcomb also commented, "I had written a couple really simple, fluffy riff ideas - the first 2 riffs in the song - they had sort of a Devin Townsend vibe to them and we tried to see if we could make them work with any of our pre-existing song ideas. They ended up being the same tempo as the original 'Mile Zero' riffs that Misha had written beforehand, and we succeeded in connecting those ideas in a natural way. It's a really different Periphery song but I love how light and optimistic it sounds coming near the end of such a dense album. I remember us arranging it late at night and not even really intending it to be for the new album, it just happened that we all liked it and felt the album could use one more song. It also has probably my favorite solo on the album, with Wes Hauch being the perpetrator. His guitar playing makes me want to jump off a bridge."

The album's track listing is:

1. Muramasa
2. Have a Blast - Guthrie Govan guest solo
3. Facepalm Mute
4. Ji
5. Scarlet
6. Luck as a Constant
7. Ragnarok
8. The Gods Must Be Crazy!
9. Make Total Destroy
10. Erised (Feat. John Petrucci Guest Solo)
11. Epoch
12. Froggin' Bullfish
13. Mile Zero (Feat. Wes Hauch Guest Solo)
14. Masamune

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