The Armed – Perfect Saviors

Posted by

The Armed have always had an excess of ideas. Each song from the Detroit group seems to go in a thousand directions at once, traversing a multitude of styles in the process. Often pegged to hardcore through a shared community and ethos, the reality is that they kinda make Armed music – confusing, bewildering, but often brilliant.

Profoundly progressive, new album ‘Perfect Saviors’ is complex, surreal, dynamic, and often funny. It’s probably their best record yet – thrillingly entertaining, it’s a ride by the seat of your pants journey that picks you up in the familiar, and transports you to the unknown.

‘Sport Of Measure’ is an incredible opening gambit, rushing from breathless harmonies to helter skelter punk crunch. Utterly defiant, highlights like ‘FKA World’ and ‘Clone’ have a way with light and shade, permeating even The Armed’s blackest moments with aspects of brilliant sunshine.

Often, it’s playful. Julien Baker’s beatific backing vocal on ‘Sport Of Form’ adds significant balance, while a bravura final chapter witnesses The Armed move from the precision of ‘Liar 2’ to the surging passion of ‘In Heaven’ before landing on the breathless honesty of climactic song ‘Public Grieving’.

In a way, the emphatic aesthetic success of ‘Perfect Saviors’ shouldn’t come as a surprise. 2021’s ‘ULTRAPOP’ grappled with gloss, while its predecessor 2018’s ‘Only Love’ was riddled with overt complexity. What ‘Perfect Saviors’ succeeds in, however, it exploding those aspects ever outwards, renewing The Armed and emboldening their most ambitious, rewarding album to date.


Words: Robin Murray

[embedded content]