Fugazi - First Demo
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First Demo is evidence of some of Fugazi's earliest times, and a window into a fraction of the work and refinement that went into crafting their songs. Recorded in January of 1988 at the D.C. studio Inner Ear, where most of their proper albums were put to tape, only one of these songs, "In Defense of Humans," saw a proper release, appearing on the 1989 Dischord compilation album State of the Union. Most of the other tracks were circulated in small quantities on free cassettes handed out by the band at its gigs. While the fidelity is as strong as the band's officially released albums would be, there's an unmistakable quality of looseness on First Demo, the band less than a year into it and still forming, with second vocalist Guy Picciotto added just a few months before these sessions. Apart from the casual studio chatter that begins and ends a lot of the songs, there's a tentativeness that shows up in slower tempos and uncertain false starts on now classic tunes like "Waiting Room" and "Bad Mouth." Only one song included here, "Turn Off Your Guns," was left off the original demo cassettes, and it's one of only a few tracks Fugazi left by the wayside as they quickly moved on to more widespread releases. While First Demo sounds at times like a band just starting out, it also shows the seeds of greatness were there with Fugazi from day one.