Marmiteboy - Urbane Warrior.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Landlord Is Dead.

Do Make Say Think - Live Colchester Arts Centre 16 May 2007

Colchester Arts Centre is perhaps the perfect venue for a band like Do Make Say Think. Their particular brand of 'post-rock' (a term I dislike as it doesn't really mean anything) is well suited to the high vaulted ceilings of this deconsecrated church. I have seen such luminaries of the genre as Mogwai, Silver Mount Zion, Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Fly Pan AM as well as two previous visits from DMST at the tiny Essex venue, so word must get around about the acoustics in the place. We're lucky to have the Arts Centre because there are very few other decent venues in Essex and it never a chore to make the 100 mile round trip to watch bands there.

I first saw DMST at Colchester supporting Godspeed about 6 years or so ago. That gig converted me into a huge fan. The thing that strikes you about this Toronto band is their undoubted musicianship. One minute the bass player is playing a five-string bass (not easy) then he switches to a four-string, then acoustic guitar, then electric guitar and then picks up a flugal horn and plays a haunting melody. This is all done effortlessly and without fuss and hystrionics.

Until the latest album "You, You're A History In Rust" DSMT have been completely instrumental. There almost jazz inspired tunes are a joy to the ears with duel drummers driving the sound. However on the latest album there have been some subtle changes and this has added to the beauty. Violinist Julie Penner who worked with band member Charles Spearin on offshoot (and more successful) band Broken Social Scene has added an extra dimension to their music. Making it warmer and richer. The vocals on several tracks on the new album are influenced by Broken Social Scene and are more to add something to the sound scape rather than to add anything lyrically.

The gig itself was a triumph. This is despite a quite dreadful support slot from Safetyword. My mates Rob and Jim and me labelled it Art-Wank. It was pretentious and up its own arse in a very big way. However DMST saved the day with a brilliant 1 hour 45 minute set. A mixture of old and new kept their fans very happy indeed and the memory of it made the hour long drive back to Southend through appalling weather well worth it. It had been 3½ years since DMST had visited us. Lets hope they return a lot sooner than that.

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