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Miles of Smiles

May 14, 2011

In 1986, Black Flag embarked on what turned out to be their last tour. Travelling with Painted Willie and Greg Ginn’s side project Gone, they rolled through America’s cities, farmlands, mountains, and deserts in a windowless passenger van and a cube truck painted with Black Flag’s iconic four bars. They played roller rinks, community centres, and on the sidewalk in front of at least one laundromat. By most accounts, Henry Rollins went legitimately insane.

Painted Willie’s lineup included drummer and filmmaker David Markey, who is probably best known as the man responsible for 1991: The Year Punk Broke. A few years before filming Sonic Youth, Nirvana, and Dinosaur Jr. on the European festival circuit, Markey did the same with his tourmates in 1986. The result is Reality 86’D, an hour long film documenting one of the most influential American hardcore bands on the brink of its own self-destruction. Watch it in its entirety here.

Hat Tip: Platform

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