Photo by Matt Otto DRINKER'S PURGATORY
(FIVE-SONG DEMO CD)
Drinker's Purgatory isn't a pretty band—they're staggering around somewhere between good ol' punk rock and that Cometbus-y/Crimpshrine-y introspecto-core, which puts them in a sort of uncomfortable place. You know the drill—too messy to be sweet, too sweet to be Flipper—so they come off instead like Jawbreaker hauled headfirst through Nausea's backline (if you haven't heard Nausea, they sound exactly as sweet and introspective as the name would imply). In a lot of ways, Drinker's Purgatory crib hard from late San Pedro band FYP's suburbo-scruff masterwork Dance My Dunce, with ragged top-of-the-lungs vocals fighting to get past the overdriven wall-of-RRRRRGGGGG! riffing: opener “Duct Tape Holds the World Together” (uncomfortably true now, no?) pretty much runs a direct IV line from FYP anti-hit “Toss My Cookies,” while closer “Not for Sale” could have come from the outtake bin of any of their later-years LPs. Still, that's not to say Drinker's Purgatory don't muster up personality all their own. The tender moments are the shaky ones (as in life, too—right, guys?): “Tear Me Away” is about as uncomfortable as the title might imply, even if it's a sentiment we've all shared on a few lonely hungover nights. But while Drinker's Purgatory hits hard, yells loud (“Make your ears bleed—RIGHT FUCKING NOW!“) and doesn't quite land every note, they generate an infectious little cloud of energy that hints at good—and messy—things to come.
OC and Long Beach bands and musicians! Mail your CDs and tapes (along with your vital contact info, plus any impending performance dates) for possible review to: Locals Only, OC Weekly, P.O. Box 10788, Costa Mesa, CA 92627-0247.