The D.C. rock band Des Demonas, from left to right, Ryan Hicks, Joe Halladay, Jacky Cougar Abok, Mark Cisneros and Paul Vivari. (Bob Bonehead Planck)

Jazz genius Cecil Taylor once described the piano as “an 88-key drum.” Bang on it and melody comes out.

Maybe that explains the tuneful womp of Des Demonas, a quintet of D.C. punk heavies, three of whom approach their responsibilities like drummers. First, there’s the band’s actual drummer, Ryan Hicks, who digs into the pocket as if lint were a renewable energy source. Then there’s Des Demonas frontman Jacky Cougar Abok, who also drums for Foul Swoops, and guitarist Mark Cisneros, who moonlights as a drummer for the Make-Up.

That leaves organist Paul Vivari, whose spectral melodies echo ’90s D.C. post-punk acts (the Delta 72, Jonathan Fire*Eater ) and their primordial rock ancestors (the Animals, ? and the Mysterians); and bassist Joe Halladay, who explains how Des Demonas became so casually formidable over the past few years: “It started out like poker night, and then there was a point when we were like, ‘We’re pretty good at poker, huh?’ ”

For real. The band’s superb self-titled album, released late last year, feels brawny and stylish across a variety of rhythms, all of which grow out of the quintet’s democratic brain-sync.

“With this group, it’s a collaborative thing,” Abok says of the band’s songwriting after a recent weeknight rehearsal. “Even if somebody comes in with an idea, they can’t really tell you what to play. They can try! . . . But that’s what I love about this group. It just happens.” His bandmates nod in agreement on the two and the four.

Show: Sept. 14 at 8 p.m. at the Black Cat. $25.