Sunday, December 27, 2009

Review #20: Black Flag - Jealous Again (EP) (1980)

Year: 1980
Genre: Punk Rock
Sub-Genres: Hardcore
Label: SST Records
Tracks: 5
Length: 6 Minutes (Very Short)
Style: Rebellious/Angry
My Rating: 6/8

"Jealous Again" was the second Black Flag record and the third release on SST Records. 1979, Keith Morris decided to leave the band to form his own band called "The Circle Jerks", which still exists today and was an influential band in the '80s punk scene. Anyways, the band hired a new singer named Ron Reyes, who played with them for about a year. After a year, tensions began to rise between Ron and the rest of the band. They managed to get him to record this record with them just before he left, and then he went through a face of violent crime and aggression towards the band for mysterious reasons. As a result of this, he is credited as "Chavo Pederast" on the EP as a mockery of his behavior towards Black Flag. He now lives in Canada as a born-again Christian with his wife and family. Shortly after this record got released, they hired Dez Cadena.

In this record, the band's music begins to evolve towards the Black Flag sound that fans recognize the band by, and as a result, the album is more aggressive than "Nervous Breakdown".

1. Jealous Again
Here you hear Ron/Chavo's wail. This sounds the most like "Nervous Breakdown" songs than any other song on the record. Basically a song from the viewpoint of a guy who's annoyed by the fact that his girlfriend is jealous of another friend of his who happens to be female.

2. Revenge
Ron's voice is far-removed from the beast-like growl of Henry Rollins, but the music is already sounding like something from "Damaged", but more up-beat. Still, Ron's voice is really strong and angry.

3. White Minority
Some may be offended by the lyrics of this song at first listen, but it's really just a parody of white-pride sentiments among certain groups. Best song on the album, 'cause the riff in the verses and the choruses are fucking great. End of Side 1.

4. No Values
A very aggressive song about having no values. Fastest song on the album.

5. You Bet We've Got Something Personal Against You!
This is an interesting one. Back when Keith was still in the band, Greg and he both wrote the music for this song, but when he left the band to start the Circle Jerks, he put this song on it as his own along with "Wasted". This is basically the ultimate slap in the face by taking that song and turning it into a diss anthem.

As I said before, after this album, Ron left the band and became known to them as "Chavo Pederast". In the same year, they found a replacement in Dez Cadena, and they recorded two singles with him in 1981. This album bridges the gap between the more '70s-sounding "Nervous Breakdown", and the truly aggressive, dark songs associated with Dez and Henry Rollins. It's a good EP, and like "Nervous Breakdown", it's also really short, so you could listen to this in the same time it takes to eat a sandwich from Subway. Maybe even less.


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