El Guapo -Fake French/ Black Eyes - Self-titled

El Guapo
Fake French
Dischord Records

Black Eyes
Dischord Records

Every music label undergoes some sort of renaissance in its history. Dischord Records is no different. The label that was founded in 1980 by Minor Threat front man Ian MacKaye and drummer Jeff Nelson has already been carving out territory for itself in this new millennium. Bands like Fugazi, Nation of Ulysses, Jawbox, and Shudder to Think that came out of Dischord have always packed a punch and have prided themselves on being different that the norm. In short, almost any band on Dischord is worth a listen, and chances are no matter what you pick it will be something new and powerful, but there are a couple newer ones not to miss.

Black Eyes, and El Guapo, both prime examples of the new thoroughbreds Dischord is stocking in its stables. Both groups hail from the East Coast and deliver a unique, enriching sound that is lost in an indie scene that is rife with stale copycat bands and rough-in-tumble wanna-bes. The comparison lies in that each band is a perfect example of punk’s divergent evolution into post-rock and gritty electronica. Either way you cut it though, these two groups define their own music, rather than adhering to popular definition.

Black Eyes are James Brown for the punk set. They deliver tight, throbbing beats, juxtaposed with a scruffy, static guitar sound that will have you grabbing your partners‚ spiky-belted hips and jamming across the dance floor. Scrambled vocals compound the staccato pump of the drums, which mix with slithering baselines, all to produce a delicious, danceable buzz of sound. Black Eyes are as sloppy and as sexy as a drunken make out session on the booze soaked floor of a back street bar. Their debut self-titled album will put the funk back in your hips and the scrap back in your style.

El Guapo picks up the pieces from the disco ball that the kids from Black Eyes kicked over and puts it back together delivering a smooth stomp for the post-rock electronica crowd. Eschewing the traditional electro "I Want More Cocaine" sound being regurgitated by some indie bands these days, the three chaps of El Guapo churn out a smooth, almost trance-like selection of post-rock tunes that defy expectations and, like Black Eyes, will get you off your bar stool and onto the dance floor. Relying an repetitive lyrical structure of thick layers of refrains mixed with slivers of stern poetry, El Guapo’s newest project, Fake French, is electronic post-rock with a decidedly edgy undertone, making it perfect excuse for transition for the "I only say I hate keyboards" set.