It's a real shame that this album's release occurs in the middle of torrential downpours, unforecasted tornados, and long, cold nights. For A Thousand Half-Truths by Making Marks is a summer album, through and through. Its light, breezy guitar riffs, laid-back drumming, and dreamy vocals are reminiscent of spending those June to August days laying on the floor of a huge canvas tent, as bands play around you. This is festival music, easy listening, and about as inoffensive as can be - but unless you plan on going travelling to warmer climates some time soon, this will be an album you'll probably only revisit in the latter half of the year.
See, the mistake I made coming into this album, was not realising the above sooner. I found the record a little bit vacuous, fairly safe, and it really became a struggle trying to invest any time in it at all. Then, one evening, it really hit me. I mean, this album is so 'summery', it's like the feeling you get when the sun is low on the horizon, and you're blinded by it. But it's warm, everything you touch is every so slightly sticky and you don't care, because fuck the alternative. This is an album where you buy a Twister ice-lolly from a newsagent at eight in the evening, and its still bright out, and warm enough to begin the melting process as soon as you unwrap your ice-treat.
The album's opening moments are its most touching, starting with 'Bruises' and 'Barcodes'. 'Bruises' feels like a Buddy Holly song; it's rocky, yet subdued enough to sound a little bit dated, and sombre. 'Barcodes' could easily be mistaken for an M&S advert soundtrack - perhaps that's unfair, but it fits. 'Uten En Tråd' is our first taste of something a little bit different. Sung in the band's native tongue (Norwegian), it feels a lot more interesting and unique to the band. It is the songs like 'Uten En Tråd' that keep you coming back to A Thousand Half-Truths. You do have to sift through some more 'plodding' tracks, but it's worth it in the end.
'Like Spinning' is the fifth track (on this ten track album), and becomes a really fun song to listen to - laden with pop-culture references that, despite a slight downbeat turn, really win you over. The same goes for the title track, 'A Thousand Half-Truths', which winds a merry tune for itself, and although a light track, manages to keep an edge on itself which makes it interesting to the end. 'Ticket Machine', the penultimate track, is the same story, with just enough there to make it stand out above the rest. Unfortunately, there are just far too many tracks which succumb to the glossy, sun-in-your-eyes meanderings, which really don't have enough to them.
Again, maybe this will be something which changes in the months to come, and personally I just couldn't get past the feeling that this album is one that needs to be listened to in a much warmer climate. Until you see someone wearing shorts in a non-ironic way, then I'd imagine it's probably best to hold off until then. At its best, this is a fun album with 'easy-listening' plastered all over it, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.