It is bands like Riddlebreak that make it a shame there aren’t more descriptive titles for genres. Architeuthis may be early on the South African six-piece’s discography, but its ingenuity attests to their clear identity. Whether or not you think Metalcore is dead, prepare for a journey where you will witness its reincarnation into something far more elaborate.
Opening track ‘Allegiant’ features cascading blends of guitar, violin and keys that immediately reveal what makes Riddlebreak special. The song is like a curtain drop for the theatrical essence of their take on Metalcore – and they present it all while sustaining the style’s classic components. The beastly screams, guitar chugs and brewing drum beats are all there, as you would expect from any band of their variety. However, they use these elements to intensify their exotic facets.
‘The Hog’ unexpectedly throws in some piercing high screams, but they are backed by radiant violins. This unorthodox meld is frequently implemented like a soundtrack to a medieval crusade in a thundering storm. ‘A Momentary Brightness’ continues that storm, aside from the brief harp interlude that provides exactly what the song title states. In this instance you can feel the clouds parting, and the full band breaks through to bestow a triumphant resolution.
EP closer ‘Eyes Of The World Ender‘ is the battle’s aftermath, wielding a newfound sense of determination. The escalating instrumental break feels more like an upsurge of hope than impending ruin. The violin and guitars fuse to form a soulful undertone while impassioned screams bring the story to an end, leaving just the right amount of suspense for a follow-up release.
Architeuthis is a glimpse of what the next generation of Metalcore could be – one that would surely keep it alive. If you think the genre has gone stale, give Riddlebreak a listen for some sonic reassurance.
7 / 10