The Telescope presents: the top albums of 2013. We gathered best-of lists from staff and contributors, crunched some numbers and came up with twelve records that unanimously wowed us this year.
In 2002, the whole world was talking about the ‘Toronto Scene.’ Though things have slowed down here since, the scene is alive and well. Back then, it revolved around Broken Social Scene; this time, there’s no super group, no Montreal sub-category—just a bunch of talented bands getting their acts together at the same time, with an obvious DIY approach.
Local record labels like Hand Drawn Dracula, Reel Cod Records and Dine Alone Records are dishing out one great record after another. Toronto had plenty of local fare to consume this year, including releases from Fresh Snow, Odonis Odonis and Dinosaur Bones, but the cream of the crop here is surely Beliefs.
Sometimes I have to remind myself that this is their first album. It’s filled with sensibilities in its structure that would turn anti-shoegazers into fans. I love the way they can drop drone-y, rockabilly guitar riff tracks, dive right into a warm-cup-of-milk kinda song, then seal the deal with a Matthew Sweet-style joint. And why do they do it? Just to keep you from putting a pin in them.
Earlier this year, when Beliefs was reviewed on The Telescope, I remember thinking that I was too hot to listen to shoegaze at the time, but the “coat bed” reference had me intrigued. The clip up above for the band’s single “Catch My Breath” definitely cools things down, up until the fire montage in its middle.
Seems The Telescope prediction that this was destined for year-end lists was accurate. If you live near Toronto, be sure to catch Beliefs on January 14, at The Horseshoe Tavern, with UK band Toy.