Desaparecidos (band)

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Origin Omaha, Nebraska
Genres Emo, post-hardcore, punk rock
Years active 2001–2002, 2010, 2012–present
Labels Saddle Creek Records, Epitaph Records
Members Conor Oberst
Landon Hedges
Matt Baum
Denver Dalley
Ian McElroy

Desaparecidos is a band from Nebraska. It is a project headed by singer/guitarist Conor Oberst, the frontman of the indie folk band Bright Eyes.



Formed in 2001, "desaparecidos" figuratively means "disappeared ones" in Spanish and Portuguese and is a reference to the people who were arrested by various South American military dictatorships and then vanished without a trace.

Read Music/Speak Spanish and hiatus (2002-2011)[edit]

Desaparecidos broke up in 2002 while the band was attracting an increasingly large following after their debut album Read Music/Speak Spanish, especially touring with Jimmy Eat World and The Promise Ring and being the feature of an MTV You Hear it First episode. However, Oberst did not have the time to dedicate to the band with the continually increasing success of Bright Eyes. Oberst continued to record with Bright Eyes, while the other members of Desaparecidos went on to form other projects. Matt Baum joined The '89 Cubs, later drumming Race for Titles and the Coffin Killers; Ian McElroy formed Rig 1; Denver Dalley moved onto bands Statistics and Intramural; Landon Hedges joined (and is currently in) Little Brazil.

Reunion, signing to Epitaph, and second album (2012-present)[edit]

Desaparecidos reunited for a single show at the Concert for Equality in Omaha's Benson neighborhood on July 31, 2010.[1] In April 2012, the band launched an official website and it was announced they would again reunite, to play Omaha's MAHA Fest.[2] In August 2012 the band embarked on a short summer tour, playing several shows together, their first since 2002.[3]

The band released two new tracks, "MariKKKopa" and "Backsell" in August 2012, the first recorded material since their return.[4] The song "MariKKKopa" was written in reference to Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona and his outspoken stance and civil rights abuses he's committed against undocumented immigrants.[5]

In February 2013, the band made available two tracks, "Anonymous" and "The Left is Right" via stream through Rolling Stone. The songs deal with the Anonymous hacker group and the Occupy movement. The single is set to be released March 12.[6] On August 2nd, 2013, the band released a new single "Te Amo Camila Vallejo", b/w "The Underground Man".

On January 27, 2015 the band announced via their Twitter page[7] that they had signed to Epitaph Records. On April 7th, Epitaph posted a new Desaparecidos single on YouTube, "City on the Hill." The band page states the release date of the Desparecidos' next full length album, Payola, on June 23, 2015.[8]

Musical style[edit]

The band's sound was labeled[9] "full-on emo-in-the-garage" by Alternative Press, "the sort of howlingly tuneful Midwestern punk that disappeared with Hüsker Dü" by Entertainment Weekly, "anthemic thrash" by Rolling Stone, and as such is noted for its sonic differences from Oberst's primary band. They have also been hailed as the "Saddle Creek supergroup".[10] Hailing from Omaha, Nebraska, Desaparecidos' lyrics are mostly about the sociopolitical state of affairs in America. The band has been both lauded and criticized for its intentionally raw sound following the release of Read Music/Speak Spanish. In sharp contrast to Bright Eyes' confessional, even sometimes mournful lyrics, Desaparecidos's angular, energetic and engaging vocals sound like those typically heard in post-hardcore.

The upcoming sophomore album, Payola, was co-produced with Mike Mogis (First Aid Kit, Saintseneca, and 'The Fault in our Stars' Score From the Motion Picture with Nate Walcott); and was recorded in several batches over the past few years. "On Payola, the band consciously tackled a wide range of political issues at a much broader scale. It has a greater degree of focus and musicality than the first release. Payola is more raw, louder, and angrier." In addition to the 6 previously released tracks, the album also includes 8 new tracks from the band.


Current members[edit]

  • Conor Oberst — vocals, guitar (2001–2002, 2010, 2012–present)
  • Landon Hedges — bass guitar, vocals (2001–2002, 2010, 2012–present)
  • Matt Baum — drums (2001–2002, 2010, 2012–present)
  • Denver Dalley — guitar (2001–2002, 2010, 2012–present)
  • Ian McElroy — keyboards (2001–2002, 2010, 2012–present)




Both EPs contain the same tracks in a different order.



  • NE vs. NC (2002 · Redemption Recording Co.)
song: "What's New for Fall"
songs: "Man and Wife, the Latter (Damaged Goods)," "Popn' Off at the F"
song: "The Happiest Place On Earth"
song: "Man and Wife, the Latter (Damaged Goods)"

See also[edit]


External links[edit]