MAKE - _Trephine_
(Independent, 2012)
by: Dan Lake (7 out of 10)
In the hearts of the forever trendy, where naught lives but whispers of the next deep underground phenomenon and the perennially old-school, post-metal is dead. In the ears of the adventurous and those of us willing to actually listen, albums like _Trephine_ can light that old fire and remind us all why we hung around the Isis fountain for so long.

Like so much extreme music, if MAKE's unhurried Godspeed Neursplosions of Pelican crunch 'n' soar isn't your thing, then move on. Each song wraps apocalyptic landscapes in multiple shifting, cycling compositional elements that sometimes thud, sometimes weep, sometimes rend their clothing in existential angst. The Chapel Hill band isn't instrumental like most of their influences, but there are long passages without vocal interruption. The songwriting tactics and tight instrumental execution certainly reveal these Southerners to be fully competent at their style, and unlike so many attempts by their nuance-starved peers, MAKE remain aware of the right time to change parts before any one idea gets driven into the ground.

Oddly, the record's sequencing does a poor job of presenting the band's strengths. "Ancient Tongues" opens the album in fine form, but "Returning to the Ruins of My Birthplace" and "Time Came Undone" share a vapid chugging that occasionally yields to more interesting bits but inevitably, frustratingly returns. Afterward, "Valhalla" spreads nearly seven minutes of Red Sparowes love and finally allows the more engaging second half of the album to stretch its Atlas Moth-like wings. Few sounds on _Trephine_ will surprise anyone who's heard a Rosetta record, but if you're looking for a comfortable journey through your own internal struggle between hope and darkness, MAKE have arrived to provide you one more satisfying trip.


(article published 2/4/2012)

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