Alter The Press!


Review: Architects/Misery Signals - Portsmouth Wedgewood Rooms - 27/01/09

Many thought Misery Signals should have headlined this tour, and you can see why. A performance full of passion, anger, and more importantly, crowd participation. For those who yet to be converted, Misery Signals left them in no doubt they had arrived, and were more than intent on making an impression.

Very rarely do support bands play for as long as the headliners, but for this once, Misery Signals can be forgiven. They more than justify their place on the tour, storming through a set including 'The Failsafe,' 'Set in Motion' and 'Anchor.' 45 minutes later, Portsmouth is left breathless. When the band next return to these shores, those who attend are in for a treat. Misery Signals are a live force to be reckoned with.

Brighton based Architects took a chance with this tour. With new full length 'Hollow Crown' released half way through the tour (and a day before this show) they risked alienating old fans, by playing unheard material for a large part of the set. Instead though, something extraordinary happened. As the band play 'Early Grave' a surge of fans push forward, fists pumping, barking the new song lyrics back to frontman Sam Carter. The album leak, perhaps serves as a testament to Architects, and the hype created ahead of its release. Such a response prompts Carter to ask 'Who stole the album?' Despite his joking, he perhaps has a right to feel bitter, but to his credit instead appreciates the privileged position he finds himself in, with hundreds of fans clinging to his every word.

Performance wise, Architects are flawless, and more than match the impressive Misery Signals. The additional clean vocals from the band's newer material appears built for a live setting, perhaps most evident in single 'Follow the Water,' which can only be described as epic. Closing with an encore rendition of 'Buried at Sea' gives the older fans a chance to flex their vocal chords, with the band ending on a high, despite the relatively short set.

With hype and momentum clearly in their favour, and the release of a critically acclaimed album, there is not doubt this is Architects tour. Following the release of three albums (although, an apparent disassociation with one) the band have done the graft, and have waited a considerable time for their time in the limelight. If the new release, combined with a faultless live performance is anything to go by, maybe now, they have finally cemented a place as one of Britain's top alternative bands.

Chris Powers

Alter The Press!