ARCHITECTS | LIVE REVIEW
Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, Fri 18 Jan
With a rich history of producing some of the most globally renowned heavy music, Britain’s music scene has proven itself to be a bastion of talented metalcore, which has remained relatively untainted by some of the more cringe-inducing trends from across the pond. With Bring Me The Horizon’s recent pop-friendly transition, Architects [above] seem to have replaced them as the industry’s backbone: their distinct blend of abusively nuanced instrumentation and guttural vocals which has garnered them an eager fanbase and enabled the band to headline impressively sized venues.
Polaris opened the show, having now accepted the semi-perpetual touring lifestyle, fresh from a tour with Parkway Drive. Their performance was well received, some ambitious moshpits managing to sustain themselves long enough to reach the breakdowns of each song in a brutal climax. It was a pleasant surprise to see a band as large as Beartooth [above] on the bill, and they didn’t disappoint. With waspish vocals peppered with anthemic hooks, they delivered a performance that dominated both stage and audience.
Finally, Architects introduced an array of lasers, projected animations and a whole host of pyrotechnics, enhancing rather than distracting from the show. While their set barely scratched their discography, instead focusing on new album Holy Hell, it was performed excellently, walking the fine line between emotional and abrasive with ease. As a band that oozes so much talent, the Brighton quintet managed to match it with equally remarkable showmanship, transforming this from a show into an experience.
Architects’ performance, touring their first album since the death of guitarist Tom Searle in 2016, here managed to poignantly channel the same anguish that drives their latest release to such high standards. Where many bands may have surrendered to the grief of losing a founding member, bandmate and most importantly brother, and quietly retreated out of the public eye, Architects seem to have embraced and fed off it, honouring Tom each night with the continued success of the band.
words ALEX PAYNE photos JASPER WILKINS