For any band coming out of DC that makes harder, punk inspired music, it’s a basic fact that they will garner comparisons to Fugazi. With the immense impact the band had (along with the Dischord imprint) on defining a sound for the District, it’s pretty inevitable.
But while it might be an apt reference point for the music of Imperial China, this band is as much about innovating as they are about honoring the familiar. They channel a post-punk sound through elements of math rock and experimental electronics, all the while still managing to maintain a sound that feels decidedly DC.
The band members have pretty diverse musical backgrounds, elements of which are all reflected in the bands sound. Their latest album, Phosphenes, comes out in just a couple of weeks as a joint release on Sockets and Ruffian. This Friday, the band joins several other of its label mates for the Sockets Showcase at the Black Cat.