D.R.I. – Greatest Hits – Review


Greatest Hits (Deadline)
by Scott Hefflon

Along with Dead Kennedys (also reissuing all their classic records on a different label), D.R.I. was one of the first punk bands I ever heard, and they blew me away. They were fast, pissed, and accuracy was not exactly a priority. Like the scene in SLC Punk where the two Rush geeks are introduced to something vital and kinda dangerous (meaning punk rock, in case I’m losing you here), life is permanently altered when you realize most of the music you’ve heard is the pussy shit they can play on the radio.

Greatest Hits captures many of the classics from the first couple records (Dirty Rotten EP and Dealing With It), and probably some of the Crossover/Four of a Kind/Thrash Zone shit I never cared much for. Surprisingly, “Reaganomics” isn’t here, but “Violent Pacification,” “Argument Then War” and the song any band trying to practice at home knows too well, “Mad Man” (Dad pounds on the door complaining that he works all day and comes home to relax and doesn’t need to hear the racket… “I don’t know who this guy is.” “That’s Spike. He’s our guitarist.” Yeah, you can feel the love…). Somewhere around ’87 or so, the band went metal (just like a lot of “punk” is now going “metal”), and that was the beginning of the long, slow (ongoing) death of D.R.I. (Like AC/DC, the Stones, and most ’70s supergroups, the band still tours and people seem to care, but any recent output is ignorable.). The sound quality of Greatest Hits is as bad as the cassettes I used to leave on the car seat and floor cuz they were cheap tapes I’d steal from Caldor’s to tape my records on. And there are no liner notes whatsoever cuz this is on Cleopatra who’s wise enough to know the less text they put in the CDs, the less they’ll embarrass themselves by being wildly inaccurate and spelling everything except their own name wrong.