Founded by Ian MacKaye (vocals/guitar), Jeff Nelson (drums), Lyle Preslar (guitar) and Brian Baker (bass) they released a pair of singles in 1981 and, after adding Steve Hansen (drums), an album in 1983 titled Out Of Step under the name Minor Threat emerged on the 'Dischord' label; a label MacKaye and Nelson founded. The self-titled Minor Threat followed in 1984. Shortly after, the group split with Complete Discography (1990) following posthumously.
Fugazi would form with MacKaye joining forces with Guy Piccotto (vocals), Brendan Canty (drums) and Joe Lally (bass). Their first efforts were the Henry Rollins produced mini-sets Fugazi (1988) and Margin Walker (1989) before releasing their trademark "Straight Edge" Hardcore style on the acclaimed Repeater (1990) album. (The term "Straight Edge Hardcore" was taken from a track of the same title from the aforementioned Minor Threat album).
David Thomas took over the vocals for their Steady Diet Of Nothing (1991) release, which got notice for Hardcore backed vocals on the No Means No track. In On The Killtaker (1993) dominated the indie charts for months and gave them a U.K. top 30, despite major labels clamoring to sign the act (and failing due to Fugazi's dislike of their deals). Red Medicine (1995) saw them break new ground for their genre by obtaining a top 20 slot in the U.K., but still failing to chart in their homeland.
Fugazi disappeared for several years until they suddenly returned with End Hits (1998), which was anything but a compilation album and got them a 47 U.S. position with the follow-up Instrument in 1999 failing to significantly chart at all.