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If history is kind to Fugazi, their records won't be overshadowed by their reputation and methods of operation. Instead of being known for their community activism, five-dollar shows, ten-dollar CDs, and resistance to mainstream outlets, they will instead be known for their intelligent songwriting and undeniably proficient musicianship, which drew from their roots in Washington, D.C. hardcore, as well as post-punk and dub reggae. Songs like "Waiting Room" and "Suggestion," as well as albums such as Repeater and Red Medicine, are considered post-hardcore benchmarks. Drummer Brendan Canty, bassist Joe Lally, and guitarists/vocalists Ian MacKaye, and Guy Picciotto formed Fugazi in 1987. Initially a trio, Picciotto was added to the lineup after the band's first live shows. Prior to forming, the members already had deep roots in the D.C. punk scene. Dischord labelhead MacKaye, who had previously been in the Teen Idles and Minor Threat, had just come from Embrace. For better or worse, Embrace, along with Picciotto and Canty's better Rites of Spring, kick-started the emo sub-genre that reached prominence years later. After further honing their cathartic live act and expanding their material, their first EP, Fugazi, was released in late 1988. More an extension of Rites of Spring's thick, dynamic, varied-tempo soul-bearing than anything else, the EP featured "Suggestion," which became the band's most well-known song. Though the course of rock history shows that loud music created by angry men tends to be of a predatory nature, "Suggestion" was an anomaly. MacKaye spoke from a woman's point of view and railed against objectification. The similarly Margin Walker EP followed the next year and was later coupled with Fugazi on CD as 13 Songs. Repeater, the band's first proper album, was released in 1990. A toughened and refined progression, it's generally regarded as a classic. Steady Diet of Nothing, issued in 1991, it was clearly the band's most challenging material to that point. Two years passed until In on the Killtaker, an abrasive set that registered on Billboard's main album chart, the Billboard 200, at number 153. While major labels were interested in signing the band and even linking with Dischord, a label that had lost Jawbox to Atlantic and Shudder to Think to Epic, they were turned away. As the increasing responsibilities of adulthood and outside musical involvements increased, Fugazi's recordings and tours became more sporadic during the latter half of the '90s. Both Red Medicine (1995) and End Hits (1998) were looser and more exploratory than the band's earliest recordings. Instrument (1999), a documentary video directed by Jem Cohen, was released with an accompanying soundtrack and included live performances and interviews. The soundtrack featured demos, jams, and incidental cutting room scraps. Fugazi's sixth proper album, The Argument (2001), was simultaneously issued with the three-song Furniture EP. Outside Fugazi, both MacKaye and Picciotto helped other bands with production. MacKaye continued to operate Dischord, and Lally began his own label, Tolotta. Picciotto also ventured into filmmaking. Though they never officially disbanded, Fugazi remained dormant as the years spun on, MacKaye touring and recording more with the Evens, his band with Amy Farina. In 2011, Dischord launched the Fugazi Live Series, an online archive that grew to house recordings of various qualities of every one of the band's more than 1,000 shows. When the series reached it's goal of complete documentation of the band's live work, Dischord marked the end of the phase with the release of First Demo, a re-mastered issue of the band's preveiously unreleased ten song demo recording from 1988. ~ Andy Kellman
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Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Waiting Room
  3.   Smallpox Champion
  4.   Great Cop
  5.   Repeater
  6.   Blueprint
  7.   Bed For the Scraping
  8.   Target
  9.   Give Me the Cure
  10.   Suggestion
  11.   Merchandise
  12.   Two Beats Off
  13.   Reclamation
  14.   Song #1
  15.   Styrofoam
  16.   Sweet and Low
  17.   Burning Too
  18.   Bulldog Front
  19.   Brendan #1
  20.   Life and Limb
  21.   Glue Man
  22.   Bad Mouth
  23.   Reprovisional
  24.   The Kill
  25.   Downed City
  26.   Birthday Pony
  27.   Argument
  28.   Forensic Scene
  29.   Fell, Destroyed
  30.   And the Same
  31.   Nightshop
  32.   Oh
  33.   Full Disclosure
  34.   Back to Base
  35.   Version
  36.   By You
  37.   Combination Lock
  38.   Latest Disgrace
  39.   Do You Like Me
  40.   Lockdown
  41.   Burning
  42.   Facet Squared
  43.   Instrument
  44.   Promises
  45.   Latin Roots
  46.   Nice New Outfit
  47.   Shut the Door
  48.   Steady Diet
  49.   Dear Justice Letter
  50.   [Untitled Track]
  51.   Cassavetes
  52.   Polish
  53.   Turnover
  54.   Ex-Spectator
  55.   Strangelight
  56.   Cashout
  57.   Runaway Return
  58.   Exit Only
  59.   Long Distance Runner
  60.   Walken's Syndrome
  61.   23 Beats Off
  62.   Returning the Screw
  63.   Public Witness Program
  64.   Last Chance For a Slow Dance
  65.   Sieve-Fisted Find
  66.   Greed
  67.   Break-In
  68.   Stacks
  69.   Margin Walker
  70.   Long Division
  71.   Epic Problem

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