Indie Vision Music, one of my favorite music blogs, have been been quietly releasing music via their own imprint. This has been happening much more quietly than label founder Brandon Jones would prefer, however releases such as Homeplate’s Derby City show that they won’t be unnoticed for much longer.
Homeplate is a fun band, and Derby City is a quick collection of songs that at first listen sound like like your standard pop punk fare. There is a nice collection of easter eggs hidden there to mix things up. The most noteworthy example of this is a ska-like horn section in “Broken Youth.” Easycore sections sure to get the blood pumping are present aplenty too. For me, the most notably example of this is in the beginning of “Long Ago.”
“I’ll be fine, as long as I try.” This line in “Expectations” stood out to me. On one hand, I think trying on my own is futile. But also taking steps of faith has always worked out in my favor, even if it didn’t seem like it right away.
“I Need Grace” is a song that virtually any Christian will able to identify with. If you don’t have that worldview, perhaps these words will resonate with you: “I ran away today / I couldn’t face my shame / I couldn’t muscle through the pain / Of knowing what I’ve done / It seems I can’t move on /All I know is to run.” I’ve certainly been there many a time. I’m not going to use a music blog to preach to you, but I’ll say that my search for truth within the context of these words in my own life has led to healing and peace, and in many ways I’m still in the thick of that journey. Instrumentally, this song stood out to me the most as well. This pop punk power ballad takes me back to my younger days, and even reminds me a bit of Simple Plan.
Not everyone will find this album groundbreaking—I don’t believe it is. But it is something to be appreciated at face value. Two best friends recorded this in quarantine, diving into what they knew best, and penning genuine lyrics along the way.
Oh, I forgot to mention—Homeplate is a two person band. Doesn’t sound like it, does it?