Shaken by shuffling, stirred by lawsuit, Black Flag arrives

The talk has been all lawsuits and lineup changes, with little said about the music.

Which may tell you something about the current state of hardcore punk pioneers Black Flag.

Since founding guitarist Greg Ginn officially reformed the band in January 2013 with Black Flag’s second singer Ron Reyes, the group has garnered plenty of headlines after Ginn sued Flag, a group made up of former Black Flag members fronted by singer Keith Morris, and Reyes was later ousted from the band in favor of band manager Mike Vallely.

Along the way, they cut a new record, the aptly titled “What The …,” a stiff, perfunctory-sounding effort where Ginn’s fierce, inventive guitar playing still sounds invigorated, but little else does.

“Down in the dirt, I’m the man of steel,” Reyes sang early on the album, which means that this bunch ought to be flying high these days — in their minds, at least.

Contact reporter Jason Bracelin at or 702-383-0476. Follow on Twitter @JasonBracelin.