Whatever you might think of Architects’ divisive ninth full-length album, For Those Who Wish To Exist, doesn’t really matter in the end. Certainly, it’s managed to run the gamut of opinions (from Anthony Fantano’s “Not Good” to a 5 star review from Kerrang!), but the truth lies somewhere in between. It’s an album that revels in sweeping dramatics, and while 15 tracks is a bit long for this sort of thing, it’s refreshing to see Architects not rehashing the sound of their last few records.
If anything, what’s a really impressive achievement is the fact that 9 full-lengths into their career, a band like this reaching #1 on the UK charts. This despite losing founding guitarist and songwriter Tom Searle in 2016, among other internal struggles. Remember that a decade ago, the developing band was still sweating it out in tiny venues, playing to whoever would listen. And while many out of touch musicians (Gene Simmons, especially) are trying to convince the world that rock is “dead”, in actuality, rock and metal are going through a creative renaissance.
With album sales at an all time low and streaming the new norm, bands like Spiritbox, Code Orange, Underoath, and Architects have all gotten particularly creative with unique music videos and livestreams. No doubt, they’ve boosted the bands’ profiles, and whether or not you’re truly into the new Architects record, the fact remains – when bands like Bring Me The Horizon and Architects succeed in bringing heavy music to a wider audience, the entire scene wins.