Review: Architects – The Here and Now

It’s a monumental task, bettering an album that was deemed seemingly perfect by almost all across the board of music, but Brighton mob Architects have given their best shot at forwarding from 2009′s Hollow Crown in the form of The Here And Now; ten tracks of something nobody really expected from the band, judging by recent reactions to radio play.

Nowadays, it’s clear to see even from the opening lines of lead single Day In, Day Out, that the band have opted for a style that they’ve no doubt grown up with, with heavy nods to the likes of Funeral For A Friend and Alexisonfire among others. Vocalist Sam Carter has ditched his gutteral roar for a far cleaner, friendly approach to singing; something only briefly touched upon with Hollow Crown. Whether the substance is still present in the band’s music, is at debate. It’s arguable that tracks like Learn To Live or Delete, Rewind are just throwaway post-hardcore tracks with the inevitable sing/scream combo that so many bands churn out, but there’s no denying that these are possibly better than any of the other contestants doing the rounds at the moment.

Ditching the band’s prominent tech-metal sound was always going to earn them new fans and lose old, but the massive leans over to big metal and hardcore riffs and heavy beats still lie ever-so-present in their core sound. BTN is a song stuck somewhere in the middle of a Young Guns and a Bring Me The Horizon track, and Stay Young Forever shows Architects can still be as heavy and unforgiving as ever, with a lot of low-end riffery present and Carter ditching any form of sing-song, but tracks like the far calmer, more ambient An Open Letter To Myself show that the band are clearly out to try something new, something they may feel they want to do, and it’s fair to say they’ve crafted it perfectly.

There’s massive potential in what the band have turned to, and a lot of different things they can do with it. If people were impressed with what they heard on Hollow Crown, they can surely be just as impressed with this record if they open their minds to new sounds, rather like the band themselves. This is heavier post-hardcore at it’s finest, and whether you like it or not, Architects should be so proud of themselves for pulling out a record that’s going to be hard to be beaten by any other UK band this year.

- George Cannings.
The Here And Now is out January 19th on Century Media Records. The band tour in April as support to Bring Me The Horizon. See http://www.myspace.com/architectsuk for more information.

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