20 Years of Dischord is a box set released to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Washington based punk label, Dischord Records. The box set includes 3 CDs which include 73 tracks, plus a book which has an introduction about how the label was formed, and then a double page spread on each of the 50 bands that Dischord released records o over 20 years. The actual anniversary fo Dischord was 2000, but the box set took so long to put together that it ended up coming out in 2002. It is available for $25 in the US (according to the back of the box) and I got my hands on it for £17 in the UK, although I have seen it for 15 on Amazon, with up to a 6 week wait. Take your choice. It can be quite hard to find (it was for me) so I would recommend either massive chain record shops (because they have everything) or specialist punk record shops (as they are likely to order it specially). Otherwise you could be looking for a while. And if you think £25 is pretty cheap for 3 CDs and a 130 odd page book, that's because Dischord have always believed in selling records for fair prices, rather than the $18 everyone else thinks is acceptable.

The first and second CDs together contain one song each from all the 50 bands Dischord have made a record for from 1980 to 2000. The third CD contains rare unreleased stuff by some of the more well known bands, an interview with some people after a gig, and 6 videos of some of the early bands performing. These videos are of quite poor quality, but really capture the DIY spirit of the time. And the video for Void is quite hilarious - after the singer makes some truly incredible jumps, and everyone starts crowdsurfing, you just see a pair of legs float around the crowd, pointing upwards. I'm not sure if their owner could hear much with his unfortunate vertical arrangement, but I'm sure he was having fun.

Tracks

CD 1: 50 Bands part 1

  1. Get up and Go by The Teen Idles
  2. Nic Fit by The Untouchables
  3. Public Defender by State Of Alert
  4. Screaming at a Wall by Minor Threat
  5. Dehumanized by Void
  6. Barbed Wire by Youth Brigade
  7. Rock & Roll Bullshit by Government Issue
  8. Fight / American Justice by Scream
  9. Live for Now by Iron Cross
  10. Pressure's On by Red C
  11. Stlen Youth by Deadline
  12. Wasteland by Artificial Peace
  13. Subject to Change by Faith
  14. Sorry / Change for the Same by Skewbald
  15. Missing Rungs by Marginal Man
  16. Oscar's Eye by Gray Matter
  17. Drink Deep by Rites of Spring
  18. Just Things by Beefeater
  19. Snake Rap by The Snakes
  20. Circles by Dag Nasty
  21. Money by Embrace
  22. Punch the Geek by Soulside
  23. We All Fall Down by Egg Hunt
  24. This Time by One Last Wish
  25. Cake by Fire Party
  26. Rebuilding by Ignition
  27. Domino Days by Three
  28. Red House by Shudder to Think
  29. Twist and Shout by Happy Go Licky

CD 2: 50 Bands part 2

  1. Blueprint by Fugazi
  2. Friend to Friend in Endtime by Lungfish
  3. Destructor by Fidelity Jones
  4. Spectra Sonic Sound by The Nation of Ulysses
  5. Perfect Sleeper by Holy Rollers
  6. Motorist by Jawbox
  7. People are Wrong by Severin
  8. Summer by The High-Back Chairs
  9. I'll Take You Down by Autoclave
  10. Pop Man by Circus Lupus
  11. Mr. Weekend by Branch Manager
  12. What Kind of Monster Are You? by Slant 6
  13. Cable by Hoover
  14. Goodbye, Dr. Fate by Trusty
  15. A Good Day by Smart Went Crazy
  16. Piss Alley by The Crownhate Ruin
  17. Poked it With a Stick by The Warmers
  18. They Live By Night by The Make-Up
  19. Castanet by Bluetip
  20. Cut Self Not by Faraquet
  21. Hooray for Humans by Q and Not U

CD 3: Rare and Unreleased

  1. Get up and Go by The Teen Idles
  2. Deadhead by The Teen Idles
  3. Stepping Stone by The Untouchables
  4. Draw Blank by State Of Alert
  5. Straight Edge (live) by Minor Threat
  6. Understand by Minor Threat
  7. Snubbing by Government Issue
  8. Asshole (with Ian) by Government Issue
  9. Asshold Dub by Minor Threat
  10. I Object by Youth Brigade
  11. Rozzlyn Rangers by Rozzlyn Rangers
  12. Black, Jewish and Poor by Void
  13. Authority (takes 1 and 2) by Void
  14. Search for Employment by Scream
  15. No Revolution by Deadline
  16. No Choice by Faith
  17. Manipulator by Marginal Man
  18. All Ages Show (already released, but rare) by Dag Nasty
  19. The Word by Fugazi
  20. Burning (live) by Fugazi
  21. Drop Dead Don't Blink by Shudder to Think
  22. We Are The One (rare) by Circus Lupus
  23. Are You Human? by Slant 6
  24. Interview with some fans after a Teen Idles gig.

Book

The 134 page book tops the brilliant package perfectly - a double page spread of each band (including a little about how the band formed, who the people in it used to play for, what the line up at the time of the track included on the box set was, anything special about the band, and a picture taken at that period. It's great to see how some figures, such as Ian MacKaye, have moved through large amounts of bands, and what influences they brought with them. It makes the DC scene look more like a group of friends than a group of unconnected bands, which I guess is probably what it was like at the time.

Overall, if you enjoy hardcore punk in any way at all, I would strongly suggest picking up this boxed set. It's available at a very reasonable price, has loads of cool art (such as two pictures of Ian MacKaye and Jeff Nelson (who founded the label over 20 years ago to release a 7" for their band The Teen Idles) sitting in the same room on the same chairs, taken twenty years apart - so much has changed in that time, but even more has stayed the same), and, most importantly for me, has absolutely brilliant music. This set was kind of an introduction to real hardcore punk rock for me, and on the strength of this only I've gone out and bought two Dag Nasty albums and not been slightly disappointed. Either way, if you already like punk, or you are thinking about getting into it, this set is a must. It really is that good.


Sources:

Owning the set
Book inside the set
Wig Out at Denko's and Can I Say albums.

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