By Andy and Cat
A Flag has risen in the form of Keith Morris, Chuck Dukowski, Bill Stevenson and Stephen Egerton.
But instead of just playing the "Nervous Breakdown" EP at the Goldenvoice soiree in 2011, Flag will be rampaging through a full set of Black Flag songs at the Punk Rock Bowling fest in Las Vegas in May.
Some people are stoked. Others are skeptical about whether this is the right lineup to be representing the legendary band.
That's the way it's always been in the world of Black Flag.
In the past, Henry Rollins got major shit from punks when he replaced Dez Cadena as the singer for the band. When Kira Rosseler took over on bass for founding member Dukowski, once again, the fans weren't sure if it was a good move for the group.
In both cases, most fans welcomed them on board. Rollins and Rosseler were more than worthy newcomers, invaluable assets who helped guide Black Flag through some solid albums and copious gigs that fans still talk about to this day.
Black Flag made an impact -- no matter who was on board.
In 2013, this foursome is billing itself as Flag, and the four iconic bars on its logo are evenly placed next to each other instead of set in the familiar jagged form. So, it's clear that Morris, Dukowski, Stevenson and Egerton (the only non-Black Flag member) know what their roles are here: To give fans a taste of what was -- in a current setting... If they missed out before, then here's their chance to get into it... If you were there, here's some new memories to place alongside the old ones.
|Kevin Scanlon photo|
We're OK with this Flag thing. We mean, who wouldn't be stoked to see someone like Dukowski rip it up on his four-string in the flesh? But we're hoping it doesn't go overboard, turn into a money grab and taint the history of the band. The demand for some Flag action is certainly at a premium nowadays -- and the Internet has lit up with people thinking a tour might be in the works -- but maybe it's best just to hit people with this Black Flag tribute once and leave them wanting more.
... Or maybe the Flag guys will get inspired from this experience and write some new tunes to complement the old ones and blow us away all over again. The mystery, the unpredictability of it all -- that's what it was all about back then, and maybe we can still have some of that nowadays.