In a world with deeply heated political events and a host of other issues, music has become an outlet for many. Casual listeners and diehard fans alike find their purpose at concerts. From the front row mosher to the headlining vocalist, having an outlet for feelings has never been more poignant.
This holds especially true for Brighton, England’s Architects. The group, already well-informed and against injustice, experienced a major shift that could turn a lesser band upside down. Architects – and the metal community as a whole – felt a major less when founding member, primary lyricist, and guitarist Tom Searle passed away from cancer last August.
Still, the group persisted, touring to celebrate their latest record, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us and honor the music Tom helped create. The lineup featured Australian heavy hitters Make Them Suffer and Long Island hardcore group Stray From The Path. The Worcester, Massachusetts date marked the close of the U.S. leg of their tour, and was, fittingly, a show to remember.
Make Them Suffer wasted no time plowing through their aggressive songs, keeping energy at a high that was persistent throughout the course of the show. It was only their second tour in the United States. If their highly charged performance was any indication, more will be in their future.
Stray From The Path followed suit, and struck an excellent balance between playing hard and bringing important topics to light. Vocalist Drew Dijorio openly condemned sexism, racism, and, during an impassioned lead-up to “D.I.E.P.I.G.,” sexual harassment. Dijorio was also thankful, however, and let the audience know SFTP were happy to play a Massachusetts date.
With plenty of crowd surfers, mosh-ready chants, and plenty of power, SFTP offered a balanced setlist and enough energy to keep the flow going. A highlight was Dijorio’s condemnation of Donald Trump, which led to their latest single, “The House Always Wins.” Their performance set Architects up with a receptive, excitable crowd.
When the headliners took the stage, it was with a bang. Opening with the gripping “Nihilist,” Architects sounded simply mammoth and delivered a set chock full of ripping, captivating tracks. Though vocalist Sam Carter did not indulge in too much stage banter, he spoke when the time was right: he was sincere, appreciative, and honest.
Though, with Architects, the songs do plenty of talking. The band included politically-charged anthem “These Colours Don’t Run” and the animal rights-inspired “The Devil Is Near” to the set list, and their inclusion was enough to say plenty without preamble.
Everyone in Architects sounded well-tuned and precise, with little difference between their records and live performance. If anything, their fervor and stage presence made the songs sound larger and heavier. During the quieter moments, Carter thanked fans for the opportunity to perform and elaborated on a couple of songs’ meanings.
After they left the crowd wanting more, the group hit the stage for an encore featuring the songs “A Match Made In Heaven” and “Gone With The Wind.” Carter took the opportunity to deliver a thoughtful, honest speech about their former band member. He praised Searle, stating that every riff and every song they played was thanks to him. It added poignance to the closing tracks, and made their strong performance even more beautiful.
Though all of the bands had great drive and pleasant sound, it was clearly the best outlet for the headliners. Architects received a terrible hand when their brother passed away. However, they have used the legacy of his work, his passion, and his drive to put on one hell of a performance. Architects delivered a concert that was visceral, cathartic, and artful – the way music is supposed to be performed.
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