D.R.I. is led by founding members Kurt Brecht (vocals) and Spike Cassidy (guitar). The band's name was taken from one of the insults that Brecht's father hurled at the group, who practiced at the Brecht family home, when they first started playing together. In the beginning, D.R.I. was a hardcore punk band and was reknowned for their extremely short and fast songs (their debut EP featured 22 songs in 18 minutes). By the mid-1980s, the band was one of the first to mix hardcore punk and thrash metal, which would be come known as the "crossover" sound.
After the release of their last studio album to date ("Full Speed Ahead" in 1995), D.R.I. continued touring regularly, and went on hiatus on and off, in over the next 20 years. The band did not record any new music until releasing the EP "But Wait... There's More!" in 2016.