Black Flag: Henry Rollins (vocals); Greg Ginn (guitar); Kira (bass); Bill Stevenson (drums).
Sleeved in a controversial Raymond Pettibon drawing of a man with a gun to his temple standing near the dead bodies of his wife and child, FAMILY MAN is possibly the oddest of Black Flag's many releases. Recorded in 1984, as the band was abandoning punk for a sort of jazz- and hardcore-tinged version of heavy metal, the album literally splits the band into two halves. Side one is a collection of unaccompanied poetry readings and spoken-word pieces by Henry Rollins, who at the time was just beginning his long career as a poet/essayist. The pieces are a combination of sociopolitical broadsides, many of which are punctuated with disturbing images, and wry, self-deprecating, and humorous bits of the kind he would continue to explore in his non-musical work in the future. Side two is made up of instrumentals by the rest of Black Flag, drummer Bill Stevenson, bassist Kira Roessler, and guitarist Greg Ginn, whose metal-edged solos dominate the varied-length songs.