For Fans Of
Make Do And Mend are one of those acts that haven’t received the credit that they deserve. They were never a phase or a ‘hype’ band, and for that reason they’ve stayed relatively under the radar. If you’re sceptical of the fact that they’ve earned the ‘underrated’ label, ‘Don’t Be Long’ proves it.
From start to finish, the record is heartfelt, dark and jaded, with lyrics that turn strikingly inward. It sounds like a step forward from their first two albums, but maintains the subtle bitterness that fuels Make Do And Mend’s sound. The titular opener’s guitars drive you through the winding path of its desperate heartache, while the catchy ‘Ever Since’ is more melody driven. It’s soft, but not smooth; gentle, but not painless. The accompanying scratchy, rough and dry vocals are wanting, discontent and sore.
Gloom is pursued on ‘Sin Miedo’ (translation: fearless) and its sister track ‘Sin Amor’ (loveless). The latter’s intensity manifests in its edgy voicing, drums and atmospheric build up. The album’s exploration of sentiments latching onto the darker spectrum of human feeling continues on ‘Each Of Us’, with a nod to The Smiths’ ‘There Is A Light That Never Goes Out’. The reference is one of music’s best, because there’s no other band that mirrors Make Do And Mend’s mood so perfectly.
Like The Smiths, Make Do And Mend are multi-talented. Their depth is unveiled in the raw, acoustic chiming and clean vocals of ‘I Don’t Wonder At All’, showcasing the multi-skilled nature of the post-hardcore outfit. Its layers mark a contrast to their overall output, but, at the same time, it’s the sort of track that changes your mind about your enthusiasm for the LP. By that, we mean for the better. Similarly, slow-burning closer ‘Begging For The Sun To Go Down’ has an equal function. It’s intriguing, propulsive and it makes a persuasive point of hitting you so hard you’re compelled to spin this album again.
Make Do And Mend have crafted a record that embodies so much sentiment it’s capable of twisting your insides as it jams out in earnest. This band is so free of gimmicks that they have an air of sincerity even distinguishable in their sound, which heightens its relativity. It’s so human it’s like it understands you, which is, at the end of the day, exactly what it’s supposed to do.
1. Don’t Be Long
2. Ever Since
4. Old Circles
5. Each Of Us
6. Sin Miedo
7. Sin Amor
8. All There Is
9. I Don’t Wonder At All
11. Begging For The Sun To Go Down