DRI (1982–PRESENT). Kurt Brecht (vocals), Spike Cassidy (guitar); Dennis Johnson (bass, later replaced by Josh Pappe, John Menor, then Chumly Porter, then Harald Oimen), Eric Brecht (drums, later replaced by Felix Griffin, then Rom Rampy).
DRI (Dirty Rotten Imbeciles) were one of the first punk/metal crossover bands and for a time were among the most successful. DRI started out in Houston, Texas, in 1982 with a unique blurry sound where hyperfast songs sped by in the course of a minute, or often well under. As the eighties progressed, many punk bands, particularly hardcore bands, began to tire of the scene’s inner politics, its inherent limited sound where soloing was looked upon as excess, and where poverty was the norm. At the same time in England, where bands like Discharge were pioneering a unique fusion of punk and metal, bands like DRI were also learning the intricacies of longer songs and guitar parts, and although things had begun to move in a more metal direction by the Dealing With It album, they fully crossed over into a punk/metal fusion with the release of the extremely influential Crossover record in 1987. The band continued in this vein and toured relentlessly, bringing skate punks to metal shows and vice versa although the band continues to this day after multiple personnel changes, the last few releases have lacked the sheer power of DRI, but the band’s legacy and contribution to the punk/metal crossover is undeniable.
Discography: Dirty Rotten (Rotten, 1982); Violent Pacification EP (Rotten, 1984); Dealing with It! (Death/Metal Blade/Enigma, 1985; Rotten, 1991); Crossover (Metal Blade/Enigma, 1987; Rotten, 1995); 4 of a Kind (Metal Blade/Enigma, 1988; Restless, 1993); Thrash Zone (Metal Blade/Enigma, 1989); Dirty Rotten LP/Violent Pacification (Rotten, 1991); Definition (Rotten, 1992); D.R.I. Live (Rotten, 1995); Full Speed Ahead (Rotten, 1995); Dirty Rotten Imbeciles (Cleopatra, 2001);