Black Flag

What The...

> > Dec 03 2013

Black Flag - What The...
By Vish KhannaIt's impossible for Black Flag to win this one. There's too much riding on the legacy the band have built up for this album — their first in 28 years — to satisfy people who hold them dear. That's the first thing. Then there's the fact that founding guitarist Greg Ginn is a divisive, litigious figure, going after former bandmates, including those who formed FLAG to tour and play Black Flag songs live, just before Ginn's plans to reform a version of the band and do the same thing came to pass.

Just last week, vocalist Ron Reyes was kicked out of the reconfigured Black Flag and, in a hilarious open letter, suggested it was because he suggested they attempt to be a good band. The external shit show ahead of the release of What the… has been a publicity nightmare and when the record (and its artwork) leaked, reviews weren't kind.

The recording is wonky; the frenetic power of the arrangements is buried beneath Reyes' needlessly multi-tracked vocals, which is a shame. There are some inspired guitar riffs and noise ideas going on — some of it reminiscent of early Nomeansno or the Jesus Lizard ("The Chase" is cool and dynamic) — but there's no might to any of it. It's a puny representation of a big sound made all the more unlistenable by the nuisance of the vocal lines. This is rage going through the motions and Black Flag fans are right to be up in arms.
(SST)
GET IT!
Pop & Rock RSS
Mailing List
SHARE IT!
Google+
Google Bookmarks
StumbleUpon
Reddit
Tumblr
Terrible album. The Chase is probably the best song on it, and that would be a decent b-side at best. Some of the tracks sound like the players are all playing a different song at once.
Start Conversation
Login
Keep me logged in
Prove You Are Not a Robot
To remove this step go back and login.

Picks

Most Popular Stories

  1. Record Store Day Fallout 2014: How Much Those Exclusives Are Now Fetching on eBayNEWS: Record Store Day Fallout 2014: How Much Those Exclusives Are Now Fetching on eBay
  2. Chad VanGaalen - 'Shrink Dust' (album stream)MUSIC / VIDEO: Chad VanGaalen 'Shrink Dust' (album stream)
  3. Barack and Michelle Obama Send Letter of Condolence to Friends and Family of Frankie KnucklesNEWS: Barack and Michelle Obama Send Letter of Condolence to Friends and Family of Frankie Knuckles

Latest Issue: May 14 Issue