>Do Make Say Think, four verbs, four different songs and one band. Their new album titled Other Truths has only four songs on it, they draw from their four word band name. Their new album is a very bold release, as it only has four songs, each of them around ten minutes long. I feel like this album doesn’t have the support of seven other songs to make it a ‘best album of the year’ release. I doubt NPR will hum about it, and I bet few lists outside of Canada will include it. With that being said, it seems like Do Make Say Think’s loyalty is largely domestically. Justin Small, the childlike guitarist of the band said to everyone in the crowd that he gets really nervous everything he plays Toronto. Ohad Benchetrit told everyone at the beginning of the show that they like to keep Toronto dates to the end of their tour, so they can really shine – warmed up and ready.
This was my first time at the Enwave theatre. It only seats around three hundred people so there really wasn’t a bad seat in the house. I however was stuck in the upper mezzanine, way up in the sky. I saw the band from two new angles that I have never seen them before, back and above. Do Make Say Think are a band I love seeing for all their noodling and energy. I felt like the only thing I could see was Spearin’s thinning hair. In going once, I would not sit up top. Turns out local record stores that sell tickets only got tickets for up top, so I suppose Enwave box office would have been a bit smarter.
Opening up the gig was Benchetrit’s solo project, he goes under the name Years. I originally thought the Happiness Project was going to open (Spearin’s project) but was quite sad when I found out upon buying my tickets that years was going to open. After seeing Benchetrit play, I really don’t regret going to this show, as I had seen the Happiness Project earlier this year. I think it would have been sad to see them this far away after seeing them front row at the Music Gallery. I was incredibly impressed with Years, Benchetrit held his own, on his own, calling out people only for a few selections that sounded a ton like Do Make. Benchetrit on his own however definitely has his own distinct sound, a ton of noodling and a lot of blurry music compliments of a looping machine that allows his to duplicate him self as many times as he wishes. It threw me off a bit because I love being able to spot out what a musician is doing. It was so ornate to the point I couldn’t get any of the playing straight. His playing was crisp and energetic. He had a lot of things to say, which was different because I have never even heard him speak before. He mentioned he stole his acoustic guitar, and followed it up with a dear story about his daughter who he had originally bought it for (and stole it from). He then went on to dedicate the tune to her.
Do Make Say Think came on shortly after. It was so bizarre seeing them a mile away from the stage, almost disappointing. It was also very strange to be sitting the entire time, unenjoyably strange. I would have like to had the option but Enwave had a very strict usher watching my every move. People crowded the front at the end, but uppers were only limited to standing in their seats, which few did.
I was impressed with their sound, as I always am. I always remind myself how old this band is. They put out stuff in the mid-nineties, it’s really remarkable they’re still making more. I first found out about them at the first Broken Social Scene island show. I had no idea who this instrumental set-up was and at the time I didn’t really care about them either. I later saw them at Call the Office in London, this was probably two years ago. It was a life altering occasion – small venue, big sounding band and my best friend at my side! I couldn’t have been happier with the set choice. I feel like I haven’t had the same treatment since then, this was probably the closest I’ve gotten to hearing what I really wanted to. In the encore of tonight’s show they played “Hooray, Hooray, Hooray” or “Hooray times three” as Small cutely introduced it as. I could have gone for some “Chinatown” and “A Tender History in Rust” but I guess I have a reason to see them again.
Julie Penner always shines. She plays the violin. I am completely amazed by her fierce sound and grace when she plays with this band. She sounds pretty yet she has a good push behind her sound, keeping up with the booming large pieced band. Penner also produces Stuart McLean’s Sunday morning show Vinyl Cafe. She’s got a pretty good set up if you ask me!
I love seeing this band live, they’ve got such a unique sound that sets them apart from all the other “post-rock” bands. I use to always say that tehy are the Explosions in the Sky of Canada, really I’m not sure if I think so. They have a dynamic sound to them that really bridges them apart, and that’s not the violin. It’s sort of a unique song format that Explosions don’t do. Mogwai and Explosions have powerful tunes, but Do Make’s have more movement to theirs, there’s more to them. I think this is one of the reasons why Do Make has been able to survive so much, their mille fois, their several layers – in music and members.