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Album Review

Serving up another quick collection of poppy punk gems — Batch is the band's second full album to clock in under half an hour — Big Drill Car don't really change at all from CD Type Thing, keeping to the same solid course as before. Egerton is joined by bandmate Bill Stevenson on production duties, but, as before, no attempts are made to turn Big Drill Car into All. Arnold continues offering up his chunky, catchy riffs as before, throwing in a solo or two at points, but otherwise just letting the songs do their thing. Drummer Marcroft handles things well enough, throwing in a few tempo changes at points while not sounding like a Neil Peart wannabe. Bassist Thomson, on what would be his final studio recording with the group, throws in a fun bit of flash himself at points (check out "If It's Poison"). Daly continues in fine voice, sounding a lot at times like Dexter Holland's eventual role model, though with a sweeter edge, still singing about life and love with a unpretentious, thoughtful air. "Never Ending Endeavor" is a strong one for him and the band as a whole, Daly's reflections on maintaining a relationship carried strongly by all (even breaking into a bit of funk rock á la the Red Hot Chili Peppers, but happily done without sounding like jerks). Devo's "Freedom of Choice" is turned into something that sounds like a Big Drill Car original, but doesn't suffer a whit for it, Arnold playing the main melody line with aplomb and Daly singing with verve.

Biography

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s

The Huntington Beach, CA, band Big Drill Car blended pop, heavy metal, and punk years before Offspring and Green Day made it fashionable. Big Drill Car were unsung heroes of the Southern California punk scene, carving arena rock hooks as sharp as Cheap Trick's but with more ragged edges. Formed by Frank Daly (vocals), Mark Arnold (guitar), Bob Thomson (bass), and Danny Marcroft (drums), Big Drill Car released its debut LP, CD Type Thing, in 1989. The album's title actually varied with each format...
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