Following a debut album fizzing with energy and tours with the likes of Pixies and Death Cab for Cutie, The Beths are back for more on new LP 'Jump Rope Gazers'. The New Zealanders pick up exactly where they left off, with the record opening with a salvo of punked-up singalongs. Breezy pop melodies sit happily atop ramshackle garage-rock guitars, Elizabeth Stokes' vocals able to float above the noise and give them more dynamic range than some of their counterparts.
From the title-track onwards, things calm down and let the band showcase their musicality; the group was formed after meeting on a university jazz course. 'Don't Go Away' nods respectfully to Weezer with its distorted guitar and surf-pop tunes, while 'You Are A Beam of Light' peels the music back to the sensitive lyrical core and acoustic instrumentation. Having taken their first steps touring abroad, the songs deal with distance, and the strains it puts on relationships to spend half the year half the world away.
Not reinventing the wheel and rarely straying into unfamiliar territory, 'Jump Rope Gazers' is nonetheless a pleasant blast of good vibes punk-rock.