11 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

When British metalcore band Architects lost founding guitarist Tom Searle to cancer in 2016, it was like losing a family member; for drummer and Tom’s twin brother Dan, he literally had. Many bands would go on a hiatus or even break up after such a tragic event; Architects went on to channel their grief into their eighth album, Holy Hell, their most personal yet. Building on their enormous sound—and on Tom’s legacy as the band’s chief songwriter—they color their extreme, melodic repertoire with melodramatic orchestration and electronic beats while chronicling the two years following his death.

Listen to the final minute of opening track “Death Is Not Defeat” and you’ll hear a pure, intense expression of physical catharsis: As frontman Sam Carter howls the song’s title over swelling percussion and frenetic strings, you can picture him unleashing every ounce of his pain and emotion into the mic. “Hereafter” faces the immediate trauma that followed: “I wasn’t ready for the rapture…I’ve been learning to live without, and I’m fighting with broken bones.” They start to find acceptance on “Royal Beggars”: “’Cause we’re broken…but we’re coping.” And the thunderous closer, “A Wasted Hymn,” looks to the future over a wall of epic strings, drums, and guitar: “Life comes at a cost, but all is not lost.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

When British metalcore band Architects lost founding guitarist Tom Searle to cancer in 2016, it was like losing a family member; for drummer and Tom’s twin brother Dan, he literally had. Many bands would go on a hiatus or even break up after such a tragic event; Architects went on to channel their grief into their eighth album, Holy Hell, their most personal yet. Building on their enormous sound—and on Tom’s legacy as the band’s chief songwriter—they color their extreme, melodic repertoire with melodramatic orchestration and electronic beats while chronicling the two years following his death.

Listen to the final minute of opening track “Death Is Not Defeat” and you’ll hear a pure, intense expression of physical catharsis: As frontman Sam Carter howls the song’s title over swelling percussion and frenetic strings, you can picture him unleashing every ounce of his pain and emotion into the mic. “Hereafter” faces the immediate trauma that followed: “I wasn’t ready for the rapture…I’ve been learning to live without, and I’m fighting with broken bones.” They start to find acceptance on “Royal Beggars”: “’Cause we’re broken…but we’re coping.” And the thunderous closer, “A Wasted Hymn,” looks to the future over a wall of epic strings, drums, and guitar: “Life comes at a cost, but all is not lost.”

TITLE TIME

More By Architects