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The Dambuilders

The Boston-based Dambuilders were a college radio staple for the better part of a decade, thanks to their noisy, chaotic take on guitar pop, in which melodies were laced with feedback and that distinctive, moaning violin. Formed in Honolulu, Hawaii in the late '80s by Dave Derby and Eric Masunga, the band relocated to Boston early in their career, where they solidified their lineup and quickly found a place in Boston's then-thriving alternative music scene. Over the course of a half dozen albums (which included a move to a major midway through), The Dambuilders gradually shed the agreeably naïve lo-fi sheen of their early work, turning into a slick, heavily produced -- if still fairly off-kilter -- pop band. The Dambuilders' last recorded effort turned out to be 1997's Against the Stars, as they broke up two years later.

The Dambuilders were frequent guests on the Boston-area independent rock radio show Pipeline!. Before a 1995 appearance they wrote and rehearsed a song called "Digitized" during their sound-check, which they then premiered on the air. The song, which appears here (it comes from the compilation Pipeline! Live Boston Rock on WMBR), wound up being the opening tune on Against the Stars.

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