Architects’ ‘Lost Forever//Lost Together’ was the sound of a band coming back swinging. Elevating them to new heights, the record broke into the Top 20 of the Official Albums Chart, and saw them headline, and then sell out, London’s Roundhouse. For their comeback to the comeback, “A lot of people were maybe expecting us to go a little bit softer. We just really wanted to do the opposite of that,” explains vocalist Sam Carter. “We know we’re good at being a heavy band and we want to continue being heavy.” There was a desire to experiment, to mix things up but Architects wanted to see what they could do with weight “instead of going more melodic.” The result is ‘All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us’. Crushing, brutal, visceral – you get the idea. “It’s a pretty heavy record, lyrically and musically, and it was definitely a conscious effort to make something as heavy as possible.”
Recorded over seven weeks at the close of last year, ‘All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us’, was “a lot of hard work. Trying to create something that could top ‘Lost Forever…’ was always going to be a challenge and we knew that going into it. We just pushed each other and we were all pulling in the same direction. It’s without question for me, the best Architects record and one we’re all the most proud of.”
More than just sonically heavy, Architects’ seventh album is their most confrontational. It sets their audiences up for realisations of mortality and global responsibility as the band look up. “We live in this really sad world at the moment where humans think we’re the greatest thing that’s happened to the planet when really, we’re essentially a cancer on the Earth. We really are just wrecking the place with no thought for future generations or for the animals on this world,” explains Sam. “With climate change, it’s almost getting to the point where even if we started doing things now, it’ll be too late to start making these changes.”
What’s worse it that “these discussions have been around for so long. We’ve essentially become this godless state. There are no leaders. There’s no one to look up to. No one’s telling us the right thing to do and no one is taking their own initiative so we’re essentially just stuck in this fucking rut and it’s pretty fucking miserable.” ‘All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us’ sees Architects vocalise this, but also find their own place within it. “It’s actually more liberating to know how fortunate we all are to be here right now and not in 50 years when it’s all gone to shit. It’s nice to know how incredible it is to be alive and to be able to have these discussions with people rather than just not having them, pushing them to the back of your mind and then when you go to sleep being absolutely fucking terrified and feeling alone.” It’s a similar vibe to ‘Lost Forever…’. “We’re all lost in this scary place but we’re together. We’re all going through it and I feel discussion is the only way to really help that side of things.”
Despite the gloom, the helplessness and the misery, there’s hope to ‘All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us’. “Through the darkness, there’s definitely a light at the end of the tunnel. As much as there are songs that are talking about the real dark things, there are songs as well that are there to help you through that and discuss the lighter side of things. It’s just acknowledging what’s going on and not hiding from it.” The title, like the record, also has more than one dimension. “It’s one of those titles where people are going to think, straight away, we’re bashing god when in fact it’s the complete opposite. We’ve abandoned our gods and they’ve abandoned us. We’ve let them go and to be honest, if there was a god – I don’t know if there is or there isn’t – but they probably don’t want anything to do with us anyway because we’re a mess.”
There are dark, daunting topics on play across this record but Sam isn’t worried about how people will handle them. He’s expecting a reaction because “it’s a confrontational record but it’s not like we’ve done anything. It’s not like we’re responsible for all the problems in the world, we’re just bringing it to the forefront and wanting to put it out there to be discussed. We’re quite excited for that. It’s very easy to plaster over the problems, not discuss them and not talk about them but over the past few years Architects have been one of those bands that really does like to use their platform in the right way. That’s not say we have a super platform by any means but we have a certain platform to discuss things that we feel are important so I’m looking forward to getting some heat for it. It’s good. There’s no point, we’ve been a band for a long time and years ago we wrote the songs about girls and that shit that happens when you’re a kid but now we’re 27/28, grown up and want to talk about things that are more important, just like we did on the last couple of records. I think this time we’re a bit depressed now. We’re a bit fed up of the state of the world so let’s have a talk about it.”
Provoking conversations and causing a reaction is something the band have done since the release of ‘Devil’s Island’ in 2011 and they “love the discussion that comes up. We loved the fact people were engaging with it more on a discussion level instead of just ‘these are the lyrics, that’s fine’. We like the fact it would spark debate and create more interest because that’s what being a musician is. You’ve got to be creative and go down those routes that you shouldn’t but you push yourselves down them. We do look forward to it. When we released ‘Match Made In Heaven’, we were like ‘here we go’. The video is pretty full on and we were excited about it. We were excited to have people be like ‘oh, what the fuck have they done now’ but, as I said earlier, we’re just bringing forward the kind of problems people like to hide behind.”
“It would have been very easy to go in and do a regular Architects record. We could have gone in and done the basic things that we could do to make it sound good but there’s no point in that, because you’re left with that for the rest of your life. We went in there, drove ourselves crazy for seven weeks, lost our minds over the tiniest bits, sat there, said this wasn’t good enough and did it again and again. There’s no way we could follow up ‘Lost Forever…’ with ‘Lost Forever… Part 2’ because that record was so special to people and to us. The exciting thing for us was that we got bigger through just being the band we wanted to be, always. For the past couple of years, it’s just been a laugh. ‘How the fuck is this happening?’ We’ve been a band for ten years, we’ve slogged our arses off around the world non-stop and all of a sudden we released ‘Lost Forever’ and it went crazy.”
When making that record, the band asked themselves, “Is this the last Architects record?” because they honestly didn’t know. They decided to “just create the heaviest thing possible at the time,” and it went from there. “Every show was amazing and so much fun so we thought fuck it. It’s a no brainer. Let’s carry on being a heavy band, that’s what we enjoy, that’s what we’re good at doing live and people seem to be enjoying it. Let’s just get a bit more creative, a bit more spacey with it and, it’s mind-blowing. The past few years have been mind blowing. We don’t take this for granted. We fully freak the fuck out so there was never a doubt in our minds. We know we’re good at being heavy and we’ll leave other bands to do the other stuff because we’re not very good at it.”
Taken from the April issue of Upset – order your copy here. Architects’ album ‘All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us’ is out on 27th May.
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