Architects: Live at The Royal Albert Hall
Name of Show: Architects: Live at The Royal Albert Hall
Venue/Location/Date: Royal Albert Hall / Kensington Gore, South Kensington, London, UK / November 21, 2020
Discourse Is Dead (new song)
Death Is Not Defeat
Gone With The Wind
Mortal After All
Animals (new song, single)
Dead Butterflies (new song)
Memento Mori (acoustic)
A Wasted Hymn (acoustic)
A Match Made In Heaven
In the moments before the livestream began, fans were going crazy in the chat room. This wasn’t like the previous, Suicide Silence, live stream I attended where only people in my city were attending that dates show. This was a 1 time, worldwide livestream for anyone and everyone to come together and watch. Therefore, there were countless people making the chat fly by. People were excited, just as I was. Let’s get into it.
I have seen Architects a few times now in past years. So I’m glad to have already had experience with them and know what I should be expecting. Simply put, they did, and achieved everything they can live, through a screen, visually and auditorily. The songs hit just as hard, and the performance was through the roof energized. Everyone on stage put on a fantastic performance. To discuss the audio right off the bat, it sounded incredible. Shout out to whoever was behind the sound of this livestream, because it was as perfect of a mix as you can get out of a live performance. Everything sounded clean and balanced. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten chills from watching a concert digitally, but I did multiple times throughout this entire concert. As for the visuals, I’d say it was more of a movie experience than being in a live concert setting, but I’m not complaining. Just pointing out that there is a difference. Of course you don’t have the shaking ground, all encompassing atmosphere, and engulfing vibe that true live music can bring, but that isn’t at the fault of the band. This had very high production value put into it with multiple moving cameras. It was shot in a way so the cameras are a part of the performance itself. I also wanted to make sure to mention that the Royal Albert Hall looks like such a great place to see a show. I’ve always heard about it but have never been. Hopefully one day. For now though, this was a great introduction to the place. Architects fit the stage so well and I can just tell from watching that they know how to fill that room with sound.
On to the band themselves; every time I see Architects, I’m reminded they are one of the best bands live. They sound just as good, if not even better than the record. A shining moment(s) for me was Sam’s vocals. His cleans have gotten soooo much better. Unlike anything I’ve heard from him. I don’t want that to overshadow his overall performance though. This man killed it. For someone deep into their career, he is sounding better and more well-rounded than I’ve ever heard him before. Highs, mids, raspy, clean, even some growls and lows I haven’t heard him do before - all top notch. The rest of the band played flawlessly and I could tell they were having a great time doing this. As you may have noticed by the setlist, they played a really good length of time. Certainly a full concert worth. I say that because the SS one I attended only had about 10 songs, which was a main criticism I had about that show. My one complaint about their setlist though is I wish they could’ve played some older songs. As you can tell, they stick to a certain few albums. I can understand it considering their extensive catalogue, but still a little upsetting they couldn’t even touch on some older material. In the middle of all this however, they did something very unexpected. They all went to the center of the room and did 2 songs acoustic. This really highlighted Sam's cleans, but also enhanced my respect even more for the talent these guys have. I truly hope they do that again on a real tour in the future.
Just to touch on the two new songs in case anyone is wondering, ‘Discourse Is Dead’ is a heavy track. Breakdown, killer riffs, all the usual great stuff you’d expect from them, but definitely not just some average “lost in the crowd” kind of song either. ‘Dead Butterflies’ was a calmer track, but arguably even bigger than ‘Animals’. Very atmospheric and beautiful. Don’t trust someone who calls a song like this “boring” just because it isn’t bouncy. It was a very good song.
Overall, beyond captivating. I hardly noticed the lighting effects or screen behind them because I enjoyed the performance itself so much. Every second, especially during the mini acoustic set, I was locked on to every little thing they were playing and how they were playing it. Great work to everyone involved, I know that it takes so much more than just these 5 guys to put something like this together. Good job, and thank you for bringing fans a taste of what we all miss so dearly.