Between their editor-taunting name, sprawling songs and gruff, hulking frontman, Damien Abraham, Toronto’s F—ed Up seem unlikely candidates for commercial success.
Yet in 2011, the co-ed sextet, which plays El Corazon Thursday, scored a left-field chart hit (No. 83 on the Billboard 200) with “David Comes to Life,” a four-sided concept album described as a misfit love story set amidst the political turmoil of early-1980s industrial Britain.
F—ed Up aren’t the only onetime punks now writing rock operas — Green Day, anyone? — but “David” is as accessible as it is ambitious, a marriage of mega-ton power-chord blasts and hooks that rain down from the heavens.
For Abraham and his posse, thinking big is nothing new. 2006’s “Hidden World” took heavyset riffs and jammed them to oblivion, the songs’ long instrumental passages giving their landing choruses added force. One part Black Flag, one part Velvet Underground, it made an impression.
“David,” however, creates and inhabits its own world — and for listeners wanting to immerse themselves further, the group recently made a companion piece, “David’s Town,” featuring guest vocalists for 11 originals played as different fictitious artists from the protagonist’s home city.
Punk purists may find it all a bit much, and for pop people, Abraham’s guttural growl remains a tough sell, but with “David,” F—ed Up establishes itself as a rarity in a time of instant gratification — an album-oriented band that isn’t afraid to say “f— you.”F—ed Up, Terror, Code Orange Kids, Power Trip
7 p.m. Thursday at El Corazon, 109 Eastlake Ave. E., Seattle; $15 (206-838-4333 or www.elcorazonseattle.com)