All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
27th May 2016 - Epitaph Records (Worldwide)/UNFD (Australia)/New Damage (Canada)
03. Phantom Fear
05. Gone With The Wind
06. The Empty Hourglass
07. A Match Made In Heaven
09. All Love is Lost
10. From The Wilderness
11. Momento Mori
Bands are expected to change over the course of their years. Musicians grow, gain new skills and influences, and input their experiences into their music. There’s hardly an artist who hasn’t, but this is often over the course of decades-long careers, and it’s perhaps unrealistic to consistently expect huge changes between albums.
Almost exactly ten years after the release of their debut album, Architects are dropping their seventh, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us, which has come under a bit of fire for sounding quite similar to 2014′s Lost Forever // Lost Together. Really, it’s a tremendous pace to be dropping songs; 74 just on the standard editions of their releases to date alone. It’s a rate that has not been without its issues – certainly, there’s division amongst fans over the fourth and fifth releases – but it’s incredibly impressive nonetheless, and you can perhaps forgive some bleed in technique and sonic quality between adjoining records.
Since Architects’ inception they’ve moved through the gears from ambitious tech metal, through metalcore muscle and post-hardcore emotion, to the bruising titans they are now. Much like Lost Forever // Lost Together, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us noticeably combines the elements of their journey so far into a punishing, apocalyptic slab of sinew. Modern Architects are predominantly purveyors of catharsis, and much like Heart Of A Coward achieved with last year’s Deliverance, there’s not a track on this album that doesn’t feature at least one absolutely banging, gurn-inducing riff. What’s more, the technicality hasn’t been lost, having shifted focus from fretboard-punishing note-flingery into some really excellent rhythmic and groove-oriented compositions to satisfy the tech-heads amongst their audience.
Unlike their Miltonian contemporaries however, Architects focus less on inner strength and personal conflict, turning their gaze – and considerable ire – outward. The enmity is considerable; All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us has a distinct voice, and sets both feet firmly in support of its message: that the modern world is a distressing, uncaring place, more concerned with photos of celebrities’ dinners than anything of any actual importance – and that that’s fucking bullshit. And how.
Principal songwriter Tom Searle’s lyrics, belted with absolute conviction (and interspersed with the occasional customary “blegh”) by Sam Carter, are crystalline in their displeasure, but also - as ever – memorable and quotable, designed to be screamed back by a throng of frothing mouths in a moshpit. In this manner, Architects are absolute masters of their craft, and it’s nice that there’s a consistent message and tone across the record. Depth is added by the inclusion of some choice samples of philosopher Alan Watts regarding acceptance of change and death.
It may not set the world alight with originality, but it does it instead with absolute fury. For pure bombast and absolute catharsis, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us is unequaled so far this year. It may be a little demoralising with its relentless negativity, but it’s a powerful anthem for the disenfranchised, and really very bloody good at what it set out to do.