Periphery is one of the most talked about bands today. Djent wasn’t really a popular genre until they came along and totally blew the doors off of it with heavy yet catchy, well-written songs like “Icarus Lives!,” “The Walk,” and “Letter Experiment.” I decided to hit up guitarist Jake Bowen to learn a little bit more about Periphery and also what his favorite Whitest Kids U Know skit is.
Mind Equals Blown: So what is the story behind Periphery? What made you guys decide to get together and write some of the most diverse and progressive music out there today?
Jake: Periphery was pretty much built over the internet. Misha and the original singer were from Maryland and they just started putting their recordings online for free download and it just happened to catch the attention of our original lineup. We all just knew that the sound that Misha was producing was what we wanted to do musically.
What other bands are you playing in/used to play in before Periphery?
I used to play in a metal band called Trapnote; I used to jam with lots of different musicians and styles. Besides Periphery, I write electronic music with some help from my close friends.
How did you break your finger? Too much meedly meedly?
According to Lambgoat I broke it off in a dude’s butt haha. But truthfully I was hanging on our Periphery backdrop in Manchester and I lost my footing and landed on my middle finger wrong. It still looks a little funky but for the most part my full range of motion is restored and I’m playing better than ever.
Fallout is one of my all time favorite games and I see you’re a fellow player. What is your favorite DLC for Fallout 3?
Operation Anchorage is cool, makes it more arcade-like but I’d have to say Mothership Zeta, the ending was pretty epic!
What is your favorite skit from Whitest Kids U Know?
Either the Peeing on Leg or How Abraham Lincoln Really Died haha.
What gear can you recommend to other people in terms of recording and playing live?
A moderately priced firewire audio interface for recording and a good preamp. We use Fractal Axe FX Ultras which we use in the studio and on stage.
Other than Meshuggah of course, what are some of your top musical influences? What bands do you listen to on a daily basis?
He Is Legend, Telefon Tel Aviv, Prefuse 73, Pantera, Nine Inch Nails, the stuff my homie Elliot Coleman writes.
What has been your greatest live show experience? What venues or cities do you like to play at the most?
Toronto always brings it. The Rave in Milwaukee is also fun because you can spend hours exploring it.
Tell your fans a bit about your gig as Dream Theater’s keyboard tech.
I was Jordan Rudess’ keyboard tech, I set up his keyboards and computers for the show. Dream Theater was my first touring experience and my only tech experience; I really learned a lot and it was great to learn that aspect of touring before actually doing the performing side of things.
What songs do you like to play the most live? Do you guys play any covers?
“Buttersnips” and “Racecar” are my favorites to play.
So what can fans expect from the upcoming double album? What details can you give on it so far?
Can’t give too much away as we’re still in the process of putting it together. I can tell you it’s gonna be really long and contain some back catalog soundclick ideas revamped as well as a ton of new songs. I think anyone who has a soul and likes music will dig it.
Are there any upcoming tours and shows for Periphery?
We have some stuff planned but no official announcements to make, yet…
What has been the biggest challenge so far for you and Periphery in the music business?
Just being able to realize that nothing ever pans out the way you want it to all the time. You gotta be flexible and accept change, otherwise you’ll just break under the constant pressures that we face.
Any shout outs you want to give out?
I’d like to shout out to my neighbors to stop parking in the spaces crookedly, it’s really annoying.
Any parting words of wisdom you want to bestow on your fans and other avid guitar players?
Smoke weed erreday.