Photos by BandAnna Photography
The British outfit paid an emotional tribute to past member Tom Searle.
The atmosphere at Festival Hall on Sunday night was crackling with energy, as people paced eagerly waiting for the killer supports just as much as the big finale. English metalcore set While She Sleeps took the stage first, the sound of their relentless riffs and the vocalist’s scathing screams bringing everybody out of their lazy Sunday reverie.
Not one eardrum was spared, especially when Aussie troubadours Polaris then jumped on and unleashed pure mayhem onto their hungry audience, who formed a big moshpit and were thrashing around to the band’s aggressive breakdowns. It was even more exciting to watch them knowing that they’re one of Australia’s most prominent metalcore outfits.
The prelude to Architects was in the unexpected form of motivational speaker Richie Hardcore, who passionately informed the audience about global violence inflicted on women and men. He had a map of Australia in the background, showing the frequency of occurrences, and appealing to the audience to use their voice. His presence was inspiring, making the emergence of Architects even more exhilarating, and they seemed to bask in the heightened vibe that the speech and the cheers from their loving fans brought to the arena.
The set was even more special since it was Architects’ very last show for the year – and they showed us just how talented they really are, kicking off with track ‘Death Is Not Defeat’ from 2018’s Holy Hell. Frontman Sam Carter was dressed smartly all in black, projecting his powerful vocals throughout the venue. His performance was amplified by the fierce riffs and pounding drums, which really stood out in the following track ‘Modern Misery’. People were jumping up and down as they sung along to each lyric, proving that Architects still have the ability to reel listeners in with their new music.
After performing ‘Gravity’ to an ecstatic crowd, Carter then yelled, ‘How the fuck are we doing tonight Melbourne?’ which incited rapturous cheers. Mentioning that it was an absolute pleasure to be headlining the venue, he then launched straight into ‘Holy Hell’, the self-titled gem of last year’s album. One of their most animated songs, ‘Gravedigger’, followed and got a lot of audience response – the moshpit was absolutely raging to the electrifying riffs and thrashing as Carter’s screams flooded the atmosphere.
After a couple more songs, his tone quickly turned sombre; acknowledging guitarist and much-loved former member of the band Tom Searle, he states that the band wouldn’t be where they are without him. A love heart with Searle’s initial ‘T//S’ appeared in the background, and Carter explained that the band have endured a challenging year, but “it’s the best fucking feeling in the world standing on this stage”.
It was endearing to also see him personally shout out each of the members of the band, and the crowd basked in the love – cheering loudly for every accolade Carter showered on his mates. Fittingly, the band would conclude the evening with ‘Doomsday’, part of which Searle wrote himself. This big finale really enlivened the moshpit, and everybody completely lost it – crazily jumping up and down and yelling out the lyrics. This was a top-notch night – Architects literally blasted the roof off Festival Hall and played an amazing set.
Highlight: The audience response to ‘Gone with the Wind’ – everybody stood up and just clapped along to the beat enthusiastically.
Lowlight: It was their last show for the year.
Crowd favourite: ‘Gravedigger’ and ‘Doomsday’.