Do Make Say Think Music Gallery, Toronto ON - June 6, 2004

The last time Do Make Say Think played their hometown of Toronto it was February 2003, thus the band found themselves open to a very warm audience reception over the course of their recent three-night stand, synching nicely with the three parts of their recent album, Winter Hymn Country Hymn Secret Hymn. Over the course of an alternately intense and haunting two hours, DMST were a band at the top of their game, ably prodding the music as it grew slowly and literally from the inside out. First comes Charles Spearin to seduce every palpable note from his bass, then it spreads outwards to surrounding guitarists James Payment and Ohad Benchitrit, then to dual drummers Justin Small and Dave Mitchell, and finally ending at the fantastic horns and strings. The venue, a lovely church, was the perfect place for such auditory acrobatics, allowing the trumpet and sax interplay to be appreciated over the cathartic ending of show highlight "Ontario Plates." At the song's apex, the noise prodded and enticed, leaving one delightfully numb, as one could easily slip away into a trance-like state, which was helped by the stifling heat inside the venue. Other highlights included an absolutely blistering rendition of "Outer Inner & Secret," a glorious version of "Reitschule" and the complex, bass-driven "Frederica." Complementing the music were animations by Christopher Mills and projections by Stephanie Comilang, which never crossed over into distraction. You could call such brilliance chemistry, but most likely it's alchemy, allowing the base functions of each song to transmute themselves into aural gold. Imbuing energy and beauty into each wonderful note, chord and nuance, DMST are one of the best live bands out there today, justifying their verb-only name due to the simple fact that their actions speak louder than words will ever allow.