Homestretch's Purgatory, a DIY album

Homestretch is energizing. The group reminds me of a simpler era in my life when power violence (the musical style) was the rule. This is thrashy punk rock with liberal doses of hardcore that are firmly planted in a heavy-metal education. Think Apt. 213, Noothgrush, most of the shit on Satan's Pimp Records, and maybe some Charles Bronson thrown in for good measure. It's all blended in a large pot (pun intended) of Neurosis and Damad. Am I name-dropping because I'm old? Nah, baby, these guys know what they are doing, and it is a huge disservice to the local scene that we at New Times slept on our laurels while this band was scorching Miami.

There are nine tracks on Purgatory, Homestretch's recent full-length. They clock in somewhere near the 23-minute mark of uncompromising far-flung fringes of excess. From opener "Daybreak" to the existentialist "Bhairava" to the slower-tempo tirade of "Azazel," this album works well because it is well thought-out.

The lineup features Jonathan Suarez on bass, Brian Ray on drums, Peter Allen on guitars, and banshee-wailing George Geanuracos on vocals. Together, these guys bring a sniper's eye to the genre, and their planned output is brisk. A new seven-inch is due out soon, which will be reviewed in these pages as well. Oh! And the disc comes in a cute cardboard sleeve with a nice insert. Pick it up. Huzzah!


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