Whatever They DO it MAKEs me SAY and THINK Wonderful Things

Do Make Say Think
Phoenix Concert Theatre
October 26, 2004
It has been exactly 12 hours since Toronto's Do Make Say Think laid down their instruments after completing a supremely satisfying set including a double encore and I'm still trying to digest the wall-o-sound that nearly overloaded my pleasure receptors. Seeing this collective, in quite full form with eight members on stage, for the first time felt like a right of passage into the Toronto music scene. I've witnessed momentous Toronto acts before such as Broken Social Scene and the Constantines, but no show welcomed me to my new adopted city more than Do Make Say Think.

The most notable aspect of the DMST experience is the double drummer assault of James Payment and Dave Mitchell. Rather than continually mimicking one another on the kits, Payment and Mitchell filled in each other's gaps, creating an omnipotent drum sound, which built the foundation of almost all of DMST's song that were primarily off their new album Winter Hymn, Country Hymn, Secret Hymn. As a wash of guitars, synthesizers and horns flooded the Phoenix Concert Theatre the two drummers batted out precision bullet-rhythms and cymbal smashes as the rest of the band flowed from crescendo to decrescendo, melting the audience with their power.

Undoubtedly glad to be back in their home-city Charles Spearin and Justin Smalls seemed particularly laid back as band members swapped instruments and dodged around one another like an extended family Christmas party. The receptive audience consisted of long-time dedicated fans (one who was so well known Spearin prompted a chant in his favour) fellow musicians (from the Constantines and Lullaby Arkestra) and newcomers (such as myself) who all seemed equally impressed with the session of beautiful music. To top it all off Smalls sold me a shirt for three dollars less so I could still afford to get home.

Writer: Steve Hamelin

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