Ever since the release of ‘Hollow Crown’ back in 2009, UK metalcore act Architects have been going from strength to strength with each subsequent release. With the band set to unleash their sixth studio album, ‘Lost Forever//Lost Together’ on March 14 through UNFD, vocalist Sam Carter and guitarist Tom Searle had a lengthy chat with Killyourstereo.com about what is shaping up as the band’s biggest year yet.
Tom, Sam, how are you guys doing?
Tom: Yeah, good thanks.
Sam: Yeah, we’re good mate.
Good to hear guys! So, first question, how is the rest of 2014 looking for Architects so far?
Tom: Pretty rosy, isn’t it? Just to be honest you know, I don’t think a year has ever looked this good. I don’t want to pump it up too much in case it all goes tits up, but it’s hard not to be pretty excited right now.
Sam: It’s pretty weird for us to be going into a year feeling this excited for everything. I mean, normally, we’re all very anxious.
Tom: But now it’s the excitement that’s making us anxious (laughs).
Good to hear. Earlier this year, you guys put out ‘Naysayer’ and just the other day you released your new song, ‘Broken Cross’. How have you been finding all of the positive reception for those new singles? Is it strange or weird to come into this year with a lot of people going nuts over the new material?
Tom: It’s so fucking weird!
Sam: Yeah, it’s really strange. You see these videos go up and you see the first initial comments and you follow it throughout the day, and then you go to sleep and wake up and go ‘How the fuck is this on that many views already!?’
Tom: This is just surreal. I’ve been talking about it with my brother (Dan, drummer) this morning and just how much of a dream come true it is for us. It is just surreal, it is just strange and we could never have hoped for it to be going any better then how it has been.
With regards to the new album, ‘Lost Forever//Lost Together’, and even though it’s a rather cliché question, I am just interested to know how the title came about and its meaning?
Tom: Nope, that’s the first time we’ve been asked that today actually! We had a few different names for the album that we were throwing around and hadn’t really settled on anything, and then in the song ‘Youth Is Wasted On The Young’ there’s the line ‘there’s parts of me that are lost forever, at least we’re all lost together’. And like, we were right in the studio and it was an intense time for us. I’m going to try and say this in a way makes sense, and not just me rambling on forever, but basically, there’s all this stuff going on. It’s scary. The world is a scary place and we all have our up and downs, you know? We’re all glued to this Earth via the medium of gravity, and you can be sure that no matter what you’re feeling, whether you’re scared, or anxious or at rock bottom, there are other people in the same boat. We’re all going through the same shit. I suppose it’s about finding your place and taking comfort in the fact that we’re all in the same boat. So yeah, we’re going big picture.
Right on! Thanks for the explanation. What did you guys find, whether it was individually or even or as a whole, was the most challenging part of recording the album?
Sam: I think it was the fact that we could work for as long as we wanted so there was no one there to tell us to stop. Henrik (Udd, production) would go home and we’d stay back recording until we were tired, so we would just go till about 2 in the morning. Then we’d go to sleep, wake up and just start straight away. We found it very hard to give ourselves the time to relax cause it was like, we’re here to do a job and we just wanted to hear it finished. Normally, we’ve been used to finishing around 6, and then just going and not being able to touch up anything or work on anything.
Tom: Yeah, the hardest part was knowing when to put it down, knowing when something was finished, and to know when something was good. Sometimes you’re just so buried in the material and the process of making it, that it’s impossible to step back and listen to it with fresh ears and say ‘What we’re making is actually good’. We really just buried ourselves in the material on this record, and I couldn’t sleep thinking about this record and I was just so desperate for it to be right. I think we went right to the edge of what our body and minds could bear to put up with on this. I mean, I lost my fucking mind making this record, it wasn’t easy!
Sam: I think it was the most into the record that the rest of us have ever been. I mean usually Tom works so hard in the studio, but I think this was the first time in a studio where it was apparent that it was taking a lot out of all of us. We were all stressing and dealing with our own little bouts of anxiety, and it was interesting to see us all going through it at the same time.
Listening through ‘Naysayer’, ‘Broken Cross’, and the stream of the album, all of the work and time you guys have put in definitely shows up in the songs.
Sam: Thank you, man!
Tom: It’s always nice when you work hard on something and see it pay off. We’ve worked hard on things before and looked back on it and thought “that’s not quite what we were going for”. It’s definitely at the point now with the record that now we’re out of the studio and we can listen to it we can say that what we’ve made here is good and that we can be totally proud of it too.
With all that being said, what was the easiest part of writing or recording process? Like what came the most naturally for you guys?
Tom: I think for us it was working with the guys from the studio, as it was just a piece of cake. There was no settling, of course we had to adjust to the way they worked but it was never hard. Just in that sense, it fitted like a glove, it was so great. Especially with Henrik who just put an enormous amount of work into the album. Just having that comfortable relationship in the studio and working with someone who just had so much patience to allow you to be insane and allow you to change things that no one else would ever cares about. For me, that was just completely priceless, because when the control is taken away from you and your “baby”, it’s just devastating.
Like losing that sense of creative control in a way?
Tom: Yeah like, I’m not saying we’ve had other people write our songs in the past, it’s just that in this studio we had such a great working relationship with them, and we made such good friends with the guys there as well which was just amazing.
Right on. With this album, do you guys personally think it’s better than say, ‘Hollow Crown’ or ‘Daybreaker’, or even ‘Ruin’ and ‘Nightmares’?
Sam: Oh yeah, I think it’s undoubtedly our best release thus far!
Tom: I’ve been thinking lately about what is the human obsession with choosing things that are better than something else. Like ‘Oh, I liked this film… but it wasn’t as good as this other film’. I mean, I’m not criticising the question as it’s a perfectly normal question to ask and I appreciate it too. But it’s just so strange, isn’t it? I mean I understand that in the writing of our albums, that I write stuff that I think is good and others think it’s bad. And I write stuff that I think is bad and other people think it’s good, it’s almost impossible to rate. Personally, however, it’s my favourite record but whether it’s our best, I’ve got no fucking idea (laughs). I’m really proud of it because we lost our balls on it and it’s probably our most consistent record, but I can’t possibly tell someone else that it’s our best record. But I do hope that people agree, and I’m sure that not everyone, but that lots of people will.
Just taking a bit of a step back to last year, with the release of One Hundred Days, did it blow you away that even after you hit your target goal for the funding, that people still kept putting in money to see this DVD come to life?
Sam: It was really flattering for us at the time. It was obviously a pretty scary time for us to be like ‘if we make this, we make this. If we don’t, we don’t’. But we had a lot of confidence in the actual film itself. Tom Welsh worked so hard and the end result was just amazing. It was very flattering to see that people were really wanting to see that side of the band, and to see what we see, and to let people know that we don’t take any of this for granted. And to also show them that we love this, and that we’re not arrogant rock stars or dickheads, that we’re just four ordinary guys and it was so, so cool to have it come to life and that it entirely crowd funded too.
Tom: I think it’s cool because we weren’t the first band to do a crowd fund campaign, but we were sort of on the forefront of the wave of it. Now we’re seeing August Burns Red and Whitechapel doing crowd funding for their DVDs. I think it just shows that this kind of platform and method just works. It was definitely very cool and exciting to be venturing a little into the unknown.
Definitely, and in a way it helps the fans connect more with what release you’re trying to put out, whether it be an album or in this case a DVD.
Tom. Absolutely. It was really cool to see that we had that support and that our fans wanted to contribute especially in a time where everyone’s about downloading or stealing your music. It was cool and it was really awesome to see people still willing to front their money for something you make.
With the build-up to the album’s release, a lot of the vinyl and CD pre-order packages have been selling really well over here, and the over in the UK you sold out The Haunt, I believe it’s called. What was that like, seeing it sell out with people only hearing one song from the album thus far?
Sam: Yeah it was really crazy, we didn’t think it’d sell that quickly. We were on our way up to London on the day that the tickets were released and they’d been out for around three minutes or so, and we checked the website to see how it was going and they were all sold. We thought there was a problem with the website, we thought that it had fucked up something. But it’s just mental really. We are so stoked to know that a lot of people have so much faith in us with this record and again, that people want to come see us in a small, tightly packed venue. It’s going to be a really cool night.
Tom: We’ve never gone into a tour before with any sold out shows. To have about three or four shows already sold out now, and with London selling out nine weeks in advance is just nuts! We’re breaking new ground for our band six albums in but it’s really humbling you know? Like fucking everyone has heard of Architects now, so to see it still growing quickly with the build up from this album was something we never really expected.
Of course, to go into this tour with very little expectations must have been awesome to have it so well received.
Tom: Yeah, I think we had to sort of let go of having a career, or of trying to be a big band or a rather successful band. We just let go of all that, and in a weird way in doing that, we kind of got what we always wanted.
On the subject of touring, there were rumours going around last year that Architects would be added to this year’s Soundwave Festival since your last festival appearance was back in 2010, or would even be at the Australian Vans Warped Tour. Are there any plans for you guys to be returning back to Australia this year?
Tom: For the record, we would love to do Soundwave every single year. We always feel a little dead inside when the line-up gets announced and that we can’t be apart of it because we loved our experience on it so much last time we were there. I don’t know if we’ve been blacklisted or something, but we would love to do it again, so we will be coming back. It’s devastating that we go a year without getting out to Australia, it’s our favourite place to tour in the world and we get to go there less than anywhere else. Like we always get messages from Australian fans saying that we need to come back or that we never tour over there, but the feelings fucking mutual. We wanna be there all the time but it just never works out, but we’ll be definitely coming back this year for sure.
You guys toured through a whole of new places back on your 2012 ‘Almost World’ tour, are there any places that you’d love to cross off the list?
Sam: There are still so many places we want to go to. We’re really enjoying all of these little adventures we go. South Africa is up there, and Japan would also be really sick to go to as well.
Tom: Our last show was just in India so there aren’t many frontiers left for us to explore. We’re gonna have to out into space next time I think. But all these new places do come with an added sense of adventure that is hard to find for a band that’s toured most places. Iceland would be really nice, we went to Portugal last summer. So there’s definitely a few places left to go.
Outside of the UK, are there any places that you would just love to come back to, to tour again?
Sam: Yeah, Australia! You’re in it mate (laughs).
Tom: You guys are right on top of the list. Australia is like the tour that’s a holiday, and the tours are upsettingly short there. Why can’t we just do a month tour in Australia? We just wanna come there all the time. We love touring and still have a great time doing it but Australia comes with that extra something.
A lot of bands seem to say the same thing about Australia, and that’s that the crowds are crazier over here as the crowds are far more hungry to see the bands play. Do you find that to be the case?
Sam: Some of the biggest shows I’ve ever seen have been in Australia.
Tom: Australia has such a huge love for heavy music and it was one of the only places in the world where we went there for the first time and people already knew who Architects was. Everywhere else we had to fucking bust our arses for weeks and months in a van for anyone to give us the time of day. Like we just turned up and you guys already knew who we were, that’s obviously gonna put you in our good books. To come and play as part of Soundwave and with Amity to these big crowds for a heavy band was also really encouraging too.
Glad to hear all that guys. One thing I have been quite interested to know is whether or not you’ll ever bring back some of older songs from ‘Ruin’ or ‘Nightmares’ and add them your current set?
Tom: Those songs never got the crowd going. We didn’t get the crowd going until we released ‘Hollow Crown’. When we recorded ‘To The Death’ off ‘Nightmares’ with Sam, I fucking loved that song, it’s fucking mental. If we played that now we’d have a sea of people going ‘what’s going on!?’
Sam: We did it the last time we played at the Coco (London). We played ‘To The Death’ and it was just basically, like a tumbleweed in he wind (laughs).
Tom: Yeah this is the thing, it’s not because we think the songs are shit or anything, it’s just that if we played to five hundred people they’ll probably only be about two people who know what we’re playing. We just want to play the songs that are going to get the best reaction from the crowd, maybe that’s not very artistic but when we play shows it’s about us and the crowd having fun. So we’re gonna play our most popular songs, fortunately, I think that our most popular songs are also are best songs.
With all of the new material, do you think there’s going to be some that will really stick out in the set?
Tom: ‘Gravedigger’ I’m sure will be a tonne of fun. ‘Broken Cross’ is going to be a also be really fun I hope. We went into the record thinking that it should be our live album. Let’s write a record that is going to be great fun for us to play live and one that’s going to sound great live. I don’t want another record where there are only two songs that people really give a shit about. People babble on about ‘Hollow Crown’ being some sort of masterpiece, but the fact of the matter is that if we played half of those songs, people wouldn’t know what was going on. It’s madness that people talk about it like it’s this seminal album, but it wasn’t. It has some pretty ropey filler on it that’s for sure. So I don’t know what everyone is on about, but I’m hoping this album will be full of songs that people wanna hear live.
Yeah, that’s a good way of looking at it man. Are there any moments that you look back on in your career that really stand out to you? Whether it be a show you played, or a producer you’ve worked with, something that you can proudly look back on in a couple of years.
Sam: Soundwave has really been one that has stuck with us for a very long time. The first we played the Coco was another big thing for our band also.
Tom: You do have those occasional moment that transcends the day to day life. You know, sometimes you play shows and it’s a very ordinary experience. And then you play shows where it’s a jaw-dropping, ‘I can’t believe this is happening to me’ sort of moment. Those moments are few and far between but they wouldn’t be special otherwise.
Oh, exactly. Architects have always had a fair few guest appearances from other bands on your albums. Are there any on the new album?
Sam: Yeah we do, we have a small Scottish man on ‘Youth is Wasted on the Young’ called Murray. He plays in a band called The Excerpt, and he’s just a great guy and an amazing musician in general.
Tom: It was cool to get someone in from a non-heavy band too. Like he doesn’t even listen to heavy music at all, so it’s nice to have someone outside of your world add to what you’re doing, and what he did for the song was perfect.
Are there any songs off ‘Lost Forever//Lost Together’ you’re looking at now that you think will be the next single, or even the next music video?
Sam: Yeah there’s a few of them on there and it’s difficult to pick out which ones are going to be bangers. I don’t know if we’re even allowed to say what ones they are yet. We’ve just shot another video for another song, which we’re hoping will be out soon.
Tom: I think I’d love to do a video for ‘Colony Collapse’, but there’s definitely going to be plenty of songs that we can’t make a video for. If they had been on any of our other records they would’ve definitely been singles.
Just one last question now, bit of an easier one now, but what albums are you looking forward to the most this year?
Sam: Whitechapel! I can’t wait to hear that new record. They’re incredible, I love how heavy that band is.
Tom: I’m looking forward to more of Amity dude.
Sam: Yeah, Amity for sure, and new (The) Ghost Inside as well.
Tom. Twin Atlantic, a band from Scotland, they’ve got a new album that I’m looking really forward to.
Yes, Twin Atlantic are really great! Well guys, I think that’s about it then. Tom, Sam, thanks so much for your time guys and I hope the tour and album release both go really well.
Tom: Awesome, cheers man, bye.
Sam: Yeah, thanks a lot mate! Bye.