Thursday, August 11, 2011

Only Posers Die

Black Flag
1981, SST
produced by Spot

Henry Rollins: vocals
Greg Ginn: lead guitar
Dez Cadena: rhythm guitar
Chuck Dukowski: bass
Robo: drums

I saw Paul Rackman's documentary American Hardcore a few years ago.  This is when I realized that there was a difference between the New York Hardcore I had been listening to in middle and high school (bands like Hatebreed, Warzone, and Earth Crisis for example) and American Hardcore.  I hadn't really lumped punk into categories really, and wasn't too aware of chronology.  Some punk bands had a similar sound, some were more ska, some more pop-rock, and some more dirty.  And then there were weird-ass bands lumped into the punk genre that had really nothing similar to anything, like Elvis Costello, Blondie, the Ramones, and the Misfits.  So... after seeing American Hardcore, I came to understand the American scene a little more, and appreciate bands like the Germs, TSOL, Bad Brains, and Minor Threat.  

Above all, Black Flag became a favorite again.  I bought this album in college because of the scene in SLC Punk when Heroine Bob punches his mirror (clearly a homage).  This album is the perfect example for American Hardcore.  The songs are a mix between goofy satire and angsty social commentary.  Punk music is not for the people that appreciate good song structure, musicianship, or even melody.  But, if you only care about raw emotion, this band is for you.  

Henry Rollins would go on to be Henry Rollins, and Robo, the drummer, would become one of the Misfits.  This is a must have for punk enthusiasts.  On top of influencing just about every punk rock band to come out after, they basically invented the DIY record label, releasing all of their stuff on Greg Gint's company, SST.  

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