After the immense record that was Lost Forever // Lost Together, it was questionable whether or not Architects would be able to create an album that would be equal in quality, let alone surpass it. And whilst musically they may have not quite reached the same standard, the magic in All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us lies elsewhere. A heavy title to match its heavy track listing and heavier still lyrics, this is an album worth taking the time to listen to.
An explosive, screaming start opens All Our Gods… in the form of first track, ‘Nihilist’. A real head banger till the end, Architects lay out the foundation for a loud, aggressive record. Even with this, Carter still manages to show us glimpses of his impressive vocals through two bridge-like breaks. Second track ‘Deathwish’ hints at a slightly less destructive song, with a subtle guitar vibrato to open. However, as soon as the drums burst in, the similarities to the previous track are unquestionable, with equally angry lyrics “we just want to watch the world burn”. Whilst ‘Deathwish’ is definitely a great track, it loses some of its ‘oomph’ for me as it’s a tad repetitive following the first.
‘Phantom Fear’ and ‘Downfall’ continue the aggression through two fast-paced, equally heavy songs. It is at this point in the album that it’s clear to see the real genius lies more in Searle’s lyrics of All Our Gods… than anything else. ‘Phantom Fear’s’ “can you taste the poison in the air?/I swear it’s everywhere, it’s everywhere’ and ‘Downfall’s’ “but there are none as blind as those who will not see” both define and emphasize the anger behind this album. As has been seen with many of 2015/16s new rock and metal releases, the attack and accusations towards politics and the dark turn the world is seeming to take is prominent in almost every track this album has to offer. Already known to fans, pre-released single ‘A Match Made in Heaven’ has a similar impact as previous tracks, only with an equally dark music video to match.
‘Momento Mori’ closes the album in the same way ‘Nihilist’ opens it – with intense screams, heavy drums and as much energy as can be put into one song. The final song comes in the form of an 8-minute track, filled with repeated verse and chorus lines “it’s a promise that you cannot break/was your life worth dying for?” and “it’ll wear you down, through skin and bone/it’s as if my mind has a mind of it’s own”. This length doesn’t make the song drag on though, but rather enhances its message. ‘Momento Mori’ – Latin for “remember that you have to die” – acts as closure not only for the album but for the journey this album takes us on, suitably ending in death with “just let me live and die in peace”.
Lyrically, All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us is superior to all of Architects’ music prior to it. However, there is not much else to distinguish one song from another and it is left as an album without any ‘standout’ tracks. That said, when you isolate each song they are all powerful, emotive and pretty flawless – a rarity among albums as many bands disguise less impressive songs with bigger, flashier singles. Their use of music as a platform to send out such a strong (and largely controversial) message is inspiring and I would definitely recommend this album.