the classic symptoms of a broken spirit

the classic symptoms of a broken spirit

“We live in a bleak spot,” Architects vocalist Sam Carter tells Apple Music. “We’re in a world where basically 90% of news is bad news. We are surrounded by it, where it is all-encompassing and it can eat away at your fucking soul. And I think this record is really trying to get that across and explore that level of where we're at—and we're just fucked, really,” he says of the British quintet’s 10th album. Sonically daring and seething with discontent, the classic symptoms of a broken spirit is a compulsively engaging dissident in Architect’s 16-year pilgrimage from progressive metalcore to the most abrasive of electrified alt-rock. “We’re not the band we were on our first record, but if you listened to the last record, it’s a logical progression,” Carter says. “We were talking so much about change and how important it is that we all need to start doing more and looking around. We’ve always discussed these elements. This is the first time we’ve shown the reality of that—which is that it can be really exhausting to feel and be open and awake.” Here, Carter talks through the themes and ideas behind each track on the album. “deep fake” “It’s leading on from ‘Animals,’ one of the last songs we wrote on [2021 album] For Those That Wish to Exist. It’s definitely leaning into this industrial world that we wanted to take the record. Like, we’re not going to use strings. We're going to make sure that everything is led by these synths and led by these weird things that we were doing in the studio. This really shows where it's going to go. It was also really fun to have a breakdown like this and show that we’re still a heavy band.” “tear gas” “This song really epitomizes the story of the record. The state of the world is just fucking insane. It's absolutely insane. And it's almost like now, especially this year, the powers that be can do and say whatever they want and it just happens. It's almost like they're not even trying to hide some of the insane things that they do, especially in the UK: We are fucked. So this record and in particular this song is a real kind of ‘You're not alone in your frustrations and your anger, and we are here to be your soundtrack for that.’” “spit the bone” “We had it all. It was so simple. Then we just kept evolving and then super-evolving and then everything became about convenience. So there has to be 500,000 cars driving stuff around and planes dropping stuff off and everyone has to have the exact meal that they want, ready to go. And now we're just cannibalizing each other to get what we want and standing on people in less privileged positions: The amount of greenhouse gas that we are putting out into the fucking world in the West is destroying lesser economies with fucking tidal waves and fucking climate change.” “burn down my house” “Me and Dan [Searle, drummer] have always been very vocal about our struggles with mental health, especially since Tom [Searle, former guitarist] passed. I think it's important to discuss it onstage, so it was important to have a song that showed off that side of where anyone can be at; to really humanize it. I always want to reach out about it, especially when I'm talking to crowds. I’d rather upset somebody and ask if they're okay than have them not be here tomorrow. I've lost a few friends to suicide and it's fucking difficult and it's really fucking hard.” “living is killing us” “This song feels like a rave to me; really loud and live. It was important coming off the back of ‘burn down my house’ to pick things up again. I love the production on this song. It is massive. It's really in your face. And I love how much the verses drop out and it’s almost like you're in a club or something or in a rave and you just go into a different room. The verses are you literally walking into another room and being like, ‘Fucking hell, it's intense out there.’ Then you go back in for the chorus and you’re like, ‘Oh Jesus.’” “when we were young” “This one came later on in the record when we were all in the studio together. It just seemed to happen. I'd spoken to Josh [Middleton, guitarist] about how I thought the record could have benefitted from a really full-on song. I just gave him a real rough idea. The next day he turned up to the studio and demoed what he’d come up with while we were having breakfast. It has its place on this record because we still put a lot of layers in there, bringing in the synths and the sub-bass and really filling it out.” “doomscrolling” “The feeds that we see on our phones are decided by what we engage with the most. And I think the things that we're always going to engage with the most are shocking news stories. They’re the first thing you see when you wake up. They’re the last thing you see when you go to bed, and it's like, ‘Oh my fucking god. This is real life, this is fucking horrible, this is fucking terrifying.’ It's so easy to just get lost for an hour or so in just that. It’s a reminder to put your phone down.” “born again pessimist” “I think it's probably inspired by all of us a little bit. It's really rocky and gives me a sort of Oasis vibe in the chorus, which is obviously a band that we’ve all listened to a lot for our entire lives because we're from England. I love the breakdown. Dan's drums are really good and the verses have got so much energy. I think that was the thing that we really wanted to get across with this song.” “a new moral low ground” “This is my favorite. It's a really, really cool song that showcases so much of where the band is now. The chorus gives me a kind of Jimmy Eat World sort of party vibe in a weird sense. By the time the vocals count to three, you're like, ‘Oh fuck, where's this four, five, and six going to go?’ That middle bit is so stonery. It sounds really clubby and then it almost drops into this Pink Floyd moment. I think it'll be one that will be in the set for a long time. It also has the first guitar solo we've ever had on a record.” “all the love in the world” “We worked with Choir Noir on this one. They'd done the last record as well, and were also on ‘tear gas.’ I think they really added to the drama here, too. It's a really cool, big-sounding rock song. My memories of making this are fun as well, because there's a beat that goes on underneath everything. It’s made up of someone slamming the dishwasher, someone hitting a fire extinguisher, someone stamping on the floor. We edge it all together to make this weird beat.” “be very afraid” “It’s the only time on the record where you really get to hear that sort of low, growly-type vocal. This song is relentless the whole way through. We pushed ourselves to the extreme here. It’s kind of like a ‘fuck you.’ We can still do this. We are never going to lose this side of our band. It's what's important to us. That said, The Beatles are one of my favorite bands and I always loved the way that they managed to finish records—hence the birdsong, which I recorded on my phone in Devonshire.”

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