The Architects' crowd-funded and independently released Border Wars album/graphic novel series is set for release tomorrow, July 16, and AP has a treat for the fans who can't wait to get their hands on the Kansas City band's latest work with a premiere of the album's third track, "Lucky," and the first four pages of  episode one of the accompanying novel. 

So, wait. What? It's an album and a comic series? The concept may be a bit tough for some to wrap their heads around, but it stems from the Architects' desire to give their fans more and to test convention. 

Vocalist/Guitarist Brandon Phillips explains:

"The upside of an industry dying under its own dumb weight is that the rules for what is and is not a viable "album" go up in flames. Bands like us get to run amok in the streets spraypainting "WOLVERINES" on everything.

Who can look us in the eye and say with any credibility whatsoever that this can't or won't work? No one. Not one person.

We had worked for all our lives within the rules that the music biz laid out, and suddenly those rules were lifted and the page was blank and we started scribbling some cool ideas on it.

In the past, there would have been someone who could have told us how and why these ideas would not work or whatever. But when we stepped back and looked for real reasons not to go for it, we could not find a single one that was as compelling as the Border Wars idea was for us."




"We were all outsiders when we were young (to a great extent, we still are) so the story is definitely tilted in that direction," says Phillips. "The only thing tougher than being an outsider in a small, shitty town is having to go toe-to-toe with authority in that town.

"Any true weirdo can handle a bully, but it's the institutionalized bullies--cops, principals, clergy, PTA--who are the ones that can and will fuck your whole world up. They have the law and the bible and your report card on their side and they will cheerfully play dirty with all those things to squash you. There is nothing I hate more than dirty authority figures and I'm guessing that the real weirdos out there will sympathize."

Check out the first four pages of Border Wars below (click to view full size.) 

The Architects, 'Border Wars' page one

The Architects, 'Border Wars' page two | Alternative Press

The Architects, Border Wars - page three | Alternative Press

The Architects, Border Wars page four | Alternative Press