Heretics is a fitting name for a band that rides the margins of skepticism. It opens boldly with “In the Belly of a Whale”, which is filled with the typical angst filled bass and sparring drums. The album also successfully emulates the edgy older guitar sound of their songs, heavy chorus and whining lead guitar with satirical lyrics.
Many old favourites make appearances as remixes or demos. This is unfortunate, but interesting, and it does show their acoustic range. It is also not surprising since many were released as b-sides such as “Send You to Heaven” or the acoustic “Backslider”.
The last three tracks make up some of the original demo they released in 1991, and “Send You to Heaven” is much more polished this time around. The rehashed inclusion of “Dollskin” and “Tyler” is surprising though. On a brighter note, “Heart of Glass” is emotionally invocative to a sense of folk philosophy, and may be the best new track on the release for this reason. The final song, “Send You to Heaven”, despite the brutal line about putting someone in a trunk to avoid arguing, is a well done and emotional demonstration of suffering in relationships.
To call this release a ‘best of’ is not so far from the truth. It is only twelve songs, yet it is a collection that celebrates not only the process of music, but also the journey of relationships. The rehashes aside, it is necessary to hear a song like “The Appeal”, “In The Belly of a Whale” or “Dollskin” to get to “Heart of Glass”, which “Leaves love behind.”