Toronto’s Beliefs release their second album Leaper on 13 November on the ever impressive Hand Drawn Dracula label. Leaper is an album of shoegaze influenced indiepop that pays homage to the likes of The Pixies, Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine and even The Wedding Present, who are a personal favourite of mine, so all the signs point to something very good. What you ultimately get is an album that is as fresh as a daisy, full of fuzzy guitars, great washes of noise and superb melodies, leading to an album that is surely bound to make Beliefs pop up on many people’s radars.
Opener Tidal Wave is as good an example of what’s to come as anything. An opening feedback squall leads to an MBV like drone of distorted guitar and your attention is grabbed from the off. I don’t know if it was deliberate or not, but the Dinosaur Jr referencing lyrics (“You’re living all over me”) are a nice touch. It’s a superb start, yet it’s trumped by the simply outstanding 1992 which is one of the best things I’ve heard in ages. Part Pixies, part joyous guitar pop, 1992 is a track you HAVE to hear and you can so below – you can’t fail to love it. Colour Of Your Name comes next sounding like The Wedding Present circa Seamonsters but having fun. It’s a summery feeling track albeit one masked in wonderfully fuzzy guitars. Drown and the title track take the pace down a notch, focusing more in atmosphere albeit with added feedback and aggression in the latter which compliments the mood nicely before the excellent pop like Ghosts arrives, wrapping you up in its loveliness.
The album is basically a succession of impressive tracks that doesn’t relent at all. Morning Light is another noise encased pop gem and it’s followed by Go Ahead And Sleep which reminds you of Ride at their most intense before they let Andy Bell have too much influence. The penultimate Leave With You perhaps suffers by comparison to the breathless opening nine tracks of the album but, that said, it still impresses. The record then ends on the brilliantly titled Swooner which starts off quieter than you might expect but builds to a booming, echo laden climax that ends the album perfectly.
As I said at the outset, Beliefs are band you are bound to hear a lot about soon given the quality of Leaper. There is no harm at all in making a record that pays homage to your influences, as long as there is enough of you in the record itself. Beliefs more than achieve that with Leaper and it is an album that you really have to get your hands on.