By: Lauren Beck
When presented with the cover to Architects’ sophomore set, Revenge, and its illustrations of skulls and roses, a child of the ’80s can’t help but recall the iconic symbols favored by pop metal legends Guns N’ Roses. But most parallels between G N’ R and the Kansas City-based Architects end at the cover art: You won’t hear Architects pounding out a piano ballad like “November Rain,” and frontman Brandon Phillips sounds more like Bad Religion’s Greg Graffin than he does Axl. Most prominently, Revenge was recorded in a mere four days, a far cry from the bloated production period for Chinese Democracy. If the bands share one thing, though, it’s a relentless, unapologetic, effing ethos.
Aiming to reproduce the adrenaline-fueled and decibel-charged onslaught of their live shows, Architects jump-start Revenge with lead single “Reciprocity.” Phillips warns his an ex: “I want you to say, ‘I give good reciprocity’ / I give good pity, I give good blame / I give good reciprocity.” Getting even has never sounded so good.
Ex-lovers aren’t the only ones who have it coming. Throughout the appropriately titled album, the foursome seeks vengeance against everyone from the local police to fans who won’t let go of Architects’ more straightforward earlier effort. On “Don’t Call It a Ghetto,” Phillips protests against the constant uniformed presence in his self-described “questionable” neighborhood. While the lyrics might recall Social Distortion, the remaining Architects — Phillips’ two younger brothers, Zach (bass) and Adam (drums), plus guitarist Mike Alexander — add a little AC/DC thrash as a counterpoint to Brandon’s Greg Dulli-like snarl. Architects ultimately offer a perfect blueprint to getting mad and getting even.
Revenge arrives March 7 on Anodyne.
Architects tour dates:
3/9, Los Angeles, CA (G4TV’s Attack of the Show) 3/13, Kansas City, MO (The Record Bar)3/16, Hot Springs, AR (Valley of the Vapors Music Festival)3/17, Austin, TX (The Parish — SXSW) 3/19, San Antonio, TX (Atomix)3/21, El Paso, TX (Lucky Devils)3/22, Tucson, AZ (Surly Wench Club)3/24, Glendale, CA (The Scene)