Drill 187

Drill 187

Independent release, 1987


REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


I don't know why I'm surprised, but some of the heaviest music these days comes from places you wouldn't expect it to. Slipknot came from Iowa - which we all know is a hotbed of thrash metal. Now, Drill 187 comes storming out of North Carolina with a groove that could eventually give some mainstream groups like Godsmack a serious run for their money. Yet their five-song eponymous EP leaves me wanting a little more proof that the band is able to deliver the goods in the long run.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The band - vocalist Jason Lilley, guitarist Jason Ussery, bassist Chris Boyle and drummer Bobby Stansbury - have obviously paid attention to their lessons in hard rock, as they have the instrumental crunch down well. (Side note: Boyle and Stansbury have since left the band.) There is a freshness to Drill 187's sound that keeps the listener on their toes, yet there's also a level of familiarity about this music, so even if it's your first time slapping the disc in the player, part of it will feel like you've had this in your collection for years.

That said, Drill 187 shows that the band is still in the learning process, though this disc is hardly a failure. Tracks like "Divine" and "Mankind" suggest a lot of promise for the group, yet they're still trying to find the right balance in their songwriting that will kick their work into the next level. Whether it's the type of instrumentation (e.g., double bass work, particular chord structure), balancing vocals with solos or even further development of Lilley's vocals, these five tracks show that Drill 187 is a very mature band but they haven't quite reached perfection.

Maybe hearing more than about 22 minutes' worth of music would have helped. Granted, the group probably wanted to draw attention to the best songs in their repertoire, and I respect that. But trying to pass a verdict on a group based on only five selections leaves them in an unfair situation. Who's to say that ten songs would have helped to cement their name in the "bands to watch" category? Fact is, unless one has seen the band live (which I have not - lousy recession), these songs are all you have to judge the band on.

My judgment is simple: I do like what I hear, but I want to hear more before I'm ready to declare them to be something special. Drill 187 is an interesting primer to this foursome, and with a little more development as a band (which may have already happened, seeing this disc was released in 1999), they could become a standard name in the hard rock category.

Rating: B-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2001 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Independent release, and is used for informational purposes only.