|Origin||Boston, Massachusetts, USA|
|Genres||Shoegaze, noise pop, indie rock|
|Labels||Caroline, Hut, Cherry Red, Virgin|
Greg Ackell |
Drop Nineteens were a Boston-based indie rock band active from 1991 to 1995. They were one of the few U.S.-based bands who styled themselves on England's distinctive shoegaze sound, taking their inspiration from bands such as My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, Th' Faith Healers, and Bleach. The band was formed by former classmates Greg Ackell (vocals, guitar) and Chris Roof (drums), who recruited Paula Kelley (vocals, guitar), Steve Zimmerman (bass), and Motohiro Yasue (guitar).
Much like Boston's Pixies before them, Drop Nineteens were better known in the UK, where, as an unsigned band, they first gained attention from the British music press with two 8-track demos. The band ultimately reached the UK's Indie Album and Indie Singles charts with formal releases after signing a record deal.
Because of artistic differences, several member changes occurred between the first and second full-length releases. Kelley, Roof and Yasue went on to pursue other interests, and Megan Gilbert (vocals, guitar), Pete Koeplin (drums, now drummer for the band Kahoots) and Justin Crosby (guitar) were added to the lineup in 1993.
Shortly thereafter, Drop Nineteens released their second full-length album, National Coma. Its original cover design was a photograph of a reclining nude woman, painted entirely white, wearing a white ski mask, in front of a white background. Most CD copies had a jumbled (censored) version of this photo, while LPs had the original cover. (The Japanese version of the album had two bonus tracks: "Tempest" and "Sea Rock.")
The band made three music videos, and toured on the success of their first album; they headlined/co-headlined/opened tours in England, Europe, and North America, and recorded BBC radio sessions for John Peel and Mark Goodier. They also played several music festivals including England's Reading Festival and North America's Lollapalooza. Further artistic differences ensued, however, and the band broke up for good in 1995.
In the late 1990s, Ackell and Koeplin recorded an album under the band name Fidel, which was never formally released. Kelley went on to front the bands Hot Rod and Boy Wonder, and is currently a solo artist with the Paula Kelley Orchestra. Rumors of a third Drop Nineteens album have circulated, but no release date has ever been announced.
Singles and EPs
- "Winona" single (1992, Hut)
- Your Aquarium CD/10"/12" EP (1992, Caroline/Hut)
- "Limp" 7"/12" EP (1993, Hut/Virgin; 1994, Caroline)
- Mayfield (1991, self-released)