Do Make Say Think
(Constellation Records; 2009)
Other Truths, comprised of four tracks sequentially titled “Do,” “Make,” “Say,” and “Think,” is Do Make Say Think’s defining release, literally. Not only do the entries take after the band’s moniker, they also stand as apt stylistic representatives. Each number tackles a separate facet of the post-rock quintet’s formula, combining to form DMST’s essence.
Opener “Do” is a torrid affair, straying from the genre’s typically roundabout introductions by cutting right to the chase. It’s spirited, with rollicking percussion and fleet guitar work. It’s easily the most straightforward tune on the album, and perhaps the closest this Toronto five-piece has ever come to conventional rock “n’ roll structure. Given how steeped in texture the following three tracks are, “Do” is almost too blunt at times, as bombast takes precedence over build-ups. However, those who have always found post-rock draining may be in for a streamlined treat.
“Make” is ushered in by ominous syncopation that is eventually coupled with haunting vocals, courtesy of an Akron/Family cameo. The utterances are buried lower in the mix and are employed as additional instruments compounding the atmosphere, rather than tools recounting a narrative. The 12-minute mammoth constitutes Other Truths’ centrepiece, a swirling tower of sounds both controlled and cacophonous, but always brushed with an air of otherworldly majesty.
“Think” is the quietest cut of the bunch, a solemn dirge that stretches out to reach every last corner of the realm DMST inhabits. The quintet conjures images of desolate, open spaces in addition to producing the type of the serenity one can occasionally derive from solitude. The track never bubbles over into frenetic agitation, placing greater emphasis on the slow-burning tone. Ultimately, it’s a pleasant if forgettable conclusion to this self-portrait.
While “Do” is too busy attempting to live up to its name, “Say” doesn’t communicate much of anything, and “Think” is largely unassuming in its tranquil nature, Other Truths remains compelling in its documentation of this outfit’s artistic poles, and it’s a testament to how breathlessly they were blended in the past.
Trial Track: “Make”