10 Great Bands From Washington DC

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10 Great Bands From Washington DC

Washington DC

Washington DC has a rich musical heritage that spans from John Philip Susa to Duke Ellington and all the way to the heady days of DC hardcore and the modern electronic sounds of Octofoil Records.

These are 10 bands from DC you know and love -- or maybe don't know and are worth a look.

10. Bad Brains

Washington DC

10. Bad Brains

Washington DC

Not only are Bad Brains the godfathers of the DC hardcore movement, but their innovative punk-meets-reggae sound could easily be the most creative thing in history.

Their landmark album "I Against I" is widely regarded as a punk masterpiece.

9. Chemlab

Washington DC

9. Chemlab

Washington DC

There's industrial rock, and then there's Chemlab.

Their "Angel-dustrial" mix of metal and standard industrial was the stuff dreams and some nightmares were made of. This intensely experimental group called it quits in 2012, leaving behind an incredible discography.

8. Asheru

Washington DC

8. Asheru

Washington DC

This modern hip-hop pioneer is best known for the bombastic theme song from The Boondocks.

In addition to his amazing solo catalog, Asheru works with with the supergroup Unspoken Heard, as well as collaborations with Mos Def and The Roots. A massive advocate for hip-hop education, he received a Peabody Award for Journalism in 2006 -- the only rapper to do so.

7. Chuck Brown

Washington DC

7. Chuck Brown

Washington DC

Chuck Brown made perhaps the most significant contribution to DC music history ever -- he gave DC their own sound.

The Father Of Go-Go gave DC a sound that belonged to nobody else anywhere, ever. Go-go is so closely tied to the city's sound that it's out of place anywhere else.

6. Dave Nada

Washington DC

6. Dave Nada

Washington DC

Nada is single-handedly responsible for creating the new EDM genre of Moombahton. The new, downtempo mix of Dutch house, reggaeton and electro-house came to be as Nada intentionally slowed down an Afrojack remix and the crowd came off its feet.

Moombahton is quickly replacing dubstep as the new darling of EDM music -- and it came from DC.

5. Thievery Corporation

Washington DC

5. Thievery Corporation

Washington DC

One of the highest compliments you can pay any musical group is to call them "unclassifiable."

Thievery Corporation made a name for themselves with the hit "Lebanese Blonde" and have continued to create uber-creative blends of electronica, lounge, acid jazz, Bossa Nova and much more.

4. Rites Of Spring

Washington DC

4. Rites Of Spring

Washington DC

Spectacularly under-appreciated in their day, Rites Of Spring revolutionized the post-hardcore movement in the 1980s and single-handedly invented what would go on to become Emo.

It's hard to imagine a band with a career spanning only two years and three recordings having such a long-reaching legacy, but this DC band pulled it off.

3. Experience Unlimited

Washington DC

3. Experience Unlimited

Washington DC

When EU's hit single "Da Butt" brought go-go into the national spotlight, DC was proud.

While most consider them a one-hit-wonder, they are an indispensable part of the history and legacy of go-go music.

2. Fugazi

Washington DC

2. Fugazi

Washington DC

If ever there was a band that stuck to their principles more, it was Fugazi. Their "never more than five bucks" policy for shows, refusal to do interviews without fully vetting the publication and fierce DIY ethic allowed them to make music without compromise.

Interestingly enough, Fugazi was led by Ian MacKaye after the breakup of...

1. Minor Threat

Washington DC

1. Minor Threat

Washington DC

This band was the genesis of nearly everything that made rock music awesome after them. As the perfectors of the DC hardcore sound, the foundation of the Straightedge movement and one of the perfect examples of grassroots followings, Minor Threat was possibly the most perfect punk band ever.

Their frenetic, chaotic sound laid the groundwork for so much, it's futile to try to list it all.