The spectacle of watching the members of seminal punk forefathers Black Flag facing off in court over merchandise sales and brand identity would seem to undercut any claims these aging icons have to latter-day cred. Original vocalist Keith Morris went on to also found a second landmark band, the Circle Jerks, and since last year has fronted the band that the reviled Greg Ginn would prefer you think of as the other Black Flag reunion, simply known as FLAG.
But if big-dollar settlements don’t exactly scream “punk rock,” Morris’ other gig certainly does. OFF! was formed in late 2009 with Burning Brides frontman Dimitri Coats, Redd Kross bassist Steven Shane McDonald, and Rocket From The Crypt drummer Mario Rubalcaba, and over the course of three albums have proved that reinventing the wheel is unnecessary as long as that wheel can still roll over anything in its path. The band’s latest, Wasted Years, takes care of business with 16 songs lasting a brief but exhilarating 23 minutes, only one track stumbling over the two-minute mark. The dreadlocked Morris spits his vitriolic lyrics so convincingly that it’s hard to believe that trademarks are the only thing he’s infringing. Check out the video for “Red White and Black” off of Wasted Years below – OFF! play the First Unitarian Church this Friday, May 16th. Tickets and information can be found here.