I guess there was a point in my life where I could have become a big Black Flag fan and become interested in the little stylistic changes they made throughout there career. But that point was a while ago and, instead, I found other things that suited my desire for noisy music.
But, according to fans of the band, there is a distinct difference to each Black Flag album. Having listened to only a couple, I can’t quite attest to that, but I know that the ones I listen to are definitely not that similar to each other, relatively speaking. (It’s relative, of course, because it’s all still basically hardcore.)
If you come across math rock in the 21st century you assume it comes out of prog rock. But, the funny thing about math rock, is that it has partial origins in post hardcore. And the funny thing about this Black Flag record is I can definitely hear some of that in Ginn’s playing, precisely played (for hardcore) complicated (for hardcore) riffs played over and over and over again. It’s certainly a bit of a ways away from the actual math rock of the ’90s but is it far off of Blind Idiot God?
Rollins is seemingly speaking (or nearly speaking) more than ever on this record and so it also feels like it’s a bit of a preview of his solo career. Or it might be I just haven’t listened to Black Flag in a while.
From memory, this is relatively distinct from their other albums that I’ve heard, as it’s arguably a little more musically ambitious (in some ways) and certainly doesn’t feel like purist hardcore.
But the record blends together fairly easily and I gotta say that it doesn’t really grab me that hard. And I’m sort of wondering how I found my way to including it. It doesn’t feel like a particularly important record, it’s just their last. But maybe, with time, I’ll care more.