Periphery + Crossfaith, Annandale Hotel – 28/02/2013

We all know that some combinations are better than others. Milk and cookies are awesome. Smashing a six-pack and attempting to fly a plane, not so much. My favourite combination is a great band and a night at the Annandale Hotel. Regardless of whether you are watching a local band, an indie trio or some brutal metal, you know you are in for a good time at the Annandale. With rumours of the hotel potentially facing closure, metal heads around Sydney rejoiced upon learning that they could see Periphery perform another epic gig at the Annandale while it is still around.

With thirty minutes to show time the band room was filling with spectators and their energised vibe. Having heard little about Crossfaith I figured I was in for a spectacle when the band walked out to the theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Crossfaith come from Osaka, Japan and these guys were absolutely crazy. I don’t think I have ever seen someone jump around as much as the synth player Terufumi, and Kenta the vocalist was an entertainer through and through. The whole band constantly worked the crowd and called for circle pits and a wall of death…which didn’t really happen, but at least they tried.

One stand-out song was Leviathan, and if you dig a little bit of synth, huge bass drops, some tight strumming patterns and gnarly vocals, these guys are for you. Think House vs. Hurricane but a bit heavier. To finish off the show, the band got a majority of the crowd on their knees and released some big white balloons; it was a nice touch to see out the last song or two.

Periphery came out to an almighty roar from the sold-out Annandale. First up they busted out Ragnarok, and fucking nailed it. It was apparent very early on that the lead singer Spencer Sotelo, who has been with the band since 2010, has some mean chops. Around him were three guitarists, a bass, and of course a steady rock of a drummer, creating a massive wall of sound. They were tight for the entire hour and showcased their musical prowess with ease. As with most gigs at the Annandale, the band sounded amazing.

The set featured a lot of tunes from the 2012 album Periphery II, such as Scarlet, Luck as a Constant and Facepalm Mute. Throughout the set Sotelo held solid banter with the crowd and even shouted one feller some JD. More importantly, he brought up the Annandale’s current predicament saying; “so I hear this might be the last time we play to the Annandale”. This upsetting statement was met with a sad cheer/boo thing, but once Icarus Lives was played it seemed as though everybody was happy again.

For the encore the audience was treated to Racecar and multiple awesome guitar solos.

It is safe to say everybody there went home well satisfied. It is important that venues like the Annandale stick around so that we can continue to witness gigs like the one that went down tonight. Hopefully we can continue to see bands not in stadiums, but at smaller more intimate venues.

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