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The Shills were formed between friends Colin Bradford and Rudy Rivera in late 1994. Rudy was known best at that time for taking the band photographs for Doxie's debut album, however he was also an accomplished drummer. Colin had worked a deal with Mike Shure to do a free bee demo at WMU's recording studio. Charles Bradford agreed to play the bass for the session for the song which was called "Hate mail". Because Charles had other musical engagements; Rudy and Colin decided to look for a permanent bass player. Rudy's roomate Jeff Parent became the prime candidate due to the fact that he played bass and liked to partake in the herb which was a common interest at that time. Colin missed the experimental nature of the music he performed with the band Screwtape so this band was going to be a return that aesthetic. The band proceeded to write many tunes that were progressive and also lo-fi. They went to record a demo with Mike Shure in 95 including the songs Sarcastic, Read between the lines, Disco Inferno, and How dry am I. The band played shows with the God Bullies, Tsunami, Thought Industry and many others. During this period they made recordings at WMUs studio that are currently lost. In an attempt to get more of a live sound, they decided to record more songs but this time with Kzoo engineer Mike Roach. These sessions yielded the songs Alien Abduction, and Soapbox. Looking to expand their horizons, The Shills were planning to move to Chicago. However at this time Colin was asked to play guitar in Dead River Drag with Bill Axe, Dave Grant, and Kevin Oberlin. Colin decided to play with Dead River Drag and the Shills quietly disbanded. Later Colin quit Dead River Drag before it's first show due to the long commute between Chicago and Kalamazoo.