Located within the outer echelon of recent metalcore bands, UK-based four-piece Architects hit the music scene back in 2004 and have since hopped across the pond to tour with well known American bands such as Suicide Silence, Emmure, Whitechapel, and As Blood Runs Black. The release of their last two records, 2009′s “Hollow Crown” and the well-received “The Here And Now,” has brought to light the fact that Architects (UK) (as if the American band Architects were on anyone’s radar) have fluctuated between a heavy and melodic sound for most of their career. Where as their previous effort had more melodic songwriting and a general post-hardcore feel to it, the groups latest effort “Daybreaker” has decided to tune things down a few steps and add some chugging to their ethereal backdrops.
This change isn’t noticed right away as the album intro “The Bitter End” sparkles into existence with harmonious pianos, bells, and soft spoken vocals — which eventually evolves into a building, shout-heavy, post-hardcore sound near its close. A proper primer for the earth-shaking riffs of “Alpha Omega” which allows vocalist Sam Carter to venture out with his vocal stretching shouts and tuneful singing. There are blocks of ethereal interludes or song parts that seem to dance in the face of the immensely powerful chugs and trench-digging riffs, such as the lovely intro and thick basslines of “Truth, Be Told,” the atmospheric programming of “Behind The Throne,” and electronic tics and angelic singing on “Unbeliever.” But with every Yin there is its equal and opposite Yang — as the band shows us with the down-tuned manic riffs of “These Colours Don’t Run” and the back-to-back solid metalcore tracks “Even If You Win, You’re Still A Rat” and “Outsider Heart,” the last of which exhibits the most reverbed and deathcore-esque sound of the band.
“Daybreaker” likes to test the duality of the metalcore and post-hardcore genres thoroughly, making headaches for musical purists, but creating some of the more diverse and creatively ranging songs out there. Those with an open mind can let Architects in and be pleasantly surprised by the gradual heavy shift given to this new record over past efforts, even with all of the graceful electronic ambiance. Those with strict ears will likely abhor the start and stop musical chicanery that attempts to appeal to both sides of the heavy/soft fence.
But it is positive to see an artist that isn’t a slave to making one dimensional heavy music, (ie. chug, chug, breakdown, chug, chug, done.) and has no qualms with articulating a more featly sound into their arsenal. In the end, “Daybreaker” might not be on everyone’s playlist by the end of the year, which are instead filled with tragically boring bands like Motionless In White, Emmure, and Black Veil Brides – but those with an ear for finessed and refined metalcore (and love collaborations with other lead singers) will latch onto this album and will wait with eager anticipation for their next stellar record. [Staff]
Score: 4 (out of 5)
Release Date: June 5th, 2012
Record Label: Century Media Records
RIYL: Bring Me The Horizon, While She Sleeps, For The Fallen Dreams
1. The Bitter End
2. Alpha Omega
3. These Colours Don’t Run (featuring Jon Green of Deez Nuts)
5. Truth, Be Told
6. Even If You Win, You’re Still A Rat(featuring Oli Sykes of Bring Me The Horizon)
7. Outsider Heart (featuring Drew York of Stray From The Path)
8. Behind The Throne
9. Devil’s Island
10. Feather Of Lead
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