Clash (magazine) - "These songs take place before a rich tech-metal tapestry that's unrelentingly brutal, yet littered with expansive, unsettling atmospherics."
Personnel: Sam Carter (vocals); Tom Searle (guitar, strings, brass, programming, electronics); Adam Christianson (guitar); Dan Searle (drums, programming, electronics).
Audio Mixer: Henrik Udd.
Recorded in Gothenburg, Sweden, the Brighton, England-based metalcore unit's seventh studio long-player is as relentlessly heavy and doggedly melodramatic as 2014's well-received Lost Forever, Lost Together. It's also much, much better. Doubling down on the expansiveness of the latter release, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us is both bedazzling and bewildering, an icy blast of politically charged apocalypse theater that pleases the eyes, but never ceases to box the listener's ears. That the band conduct such sonic malevolence from a platform built on veganism and environmental activism is both refreshing -- this is a genre that's often swimming in neediness, non-specific rage, and self-absorption -- and compelling. The reverb-heavy production work from Fredrik Nordström, which is likely informed by his time behind the board with melodic death metal giants like Dark Tranquillity, In Flames, and Opeth, contributes mightily to All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us' dark pageantry. Architects' signature blend of breakdown-heavy hardcore, symphonic screamo, and ambient post-metal has never sounded more muscular and refined. Fans who received an early taste of the LP via the towering single "A Match Made in Heaven" can rest assured that the remaining ten tracks follow suit, with highlights arriving via the punishing "Downfall," the pitiless and aptly-named opener "Nihilist," and the truly epic, eight-minute closer "Memento Mori," the latter of which suggests how Radiohead might have handled Kid A had they come from an extreme metal background instead of the baggy Brit-pop noughties. This is heady and hearty stuff delivered by a band surveying the ruins below from their creative peak. ~ James Christopher Monger