A new Schiff base containing azo chromophore group obtained by condensation of 2-hydroxy-4-[(E)phenyldiazenyl]benzaldehyde with 3,4-dimethylaniline (HL) are used for the syntheses of new copper(II) and zinc(II) chelates, [Cu(L)(2)], and [Zn(L)(2)], and characterized by physico-chemical and spectroscopic methods such as H-1 and C-13 NMR, IR, UV. Vis. and elemental analyses. The solid state structure of the ligand was characterized by single crystal X-ray diffraction study. X-ray diffraction data was then used to calculate the harmonic oscillator model of aromaticity (HOMA) indexes for the rings so as to investigate of enol-imine and keto-amine tautomeric forms in the solid state. The phenol ring C10-C15 shows a considerable deviation from the aromaticity with HOMA value of 0.837 suggesting the shift towards the keto-amine tautomeric form in the solid state. The analytical data show that the metal to ligand ratio in the chelates was found to be 1:2. Theoretical calculations of the possible isomers of the ligand and two metal complexes are performed by using B3LYP method. Electrochemical and photoluminescence properties of the synthesized azo-Schiff bases were also investigated. (C) 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.