If you think back to 26 years ago when Mike Vallely caveman’d into his first video part in Powell Peralta’s Public Domain, it’s likely that you would never have laid down £50 on him one day being the vocalist in Black Flag. Fast forward to today and the announcement that Vallely is the official singer of said hardcore legends is a firm reality.
The difference is though that Black Flag shot themselves in the foot during 2013 so badly that this news is no longer being regarded as cool. Luke warm in actual fact, as Greg Ginn’s stubborness has removed Black Flag as we know it from being top of the punk rock league. With Ron Reyes bailing out to the reformed project last year due to embarressment from Ginn’s own narcissism and the much publicised ongoing war with splinter group ‘Flag’ headed up by their first vocalist Keith Morris, Black Flag’s own implosion has left many wondering why we should bother with any of it at all. Speaking exclusively to Rolling Stone today Vallely says:
“We feel that, generally, the band fell short in 2013 because of a difference in the philosophies of Ron and Greg – it just led to dysfunction. It could have been better. Black Flag can be a stronger, more cohesive, tighter band. We want to prove that.”
With Reyes now gone and Ginn and Vallely reunited once again in a different project (following their ‘Good for You‘ band) Vallely seems stoked on his new position: “He (Ginn) told me he made a mistake by working with Ron and trying to pander to a sort of old-school thing.” added Vallely. “He just thought that I was the guy for the job. . . I’m not gonna say no to that.”
So, here we are in 2014. The skateboard scene is filling its pockets and has opened its core door to corporations just like it did back in the 80s, and Vallely said yes to a marriage with Ginn (after managing him for a while too don’t forget) and now finds himself at the helm of Black Flag. He is still skating and runs his own brand, probably still wrestling, still doing what he wants in life and not having to flip burgers for a living. On one hand you have to commend him as he is most likely living a dream, on the other though, that dream may well become his worst nightmare filling boots that are forever going to be covered in more shit than the floor of a GG Allin show. Only time will tell.