Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US)

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

PROFESSOR BLACK / BONES / HEAVENS DECAY / SONS OF FAMINE

Date: 31st March, 2018
Venue: Cobra Lounge
Ticket: $10 (€8) in advance - $13 (€11) day of show
Promoter: n/a


There is a good side to going to ‘all-ages’ shows and that is a strict timetable; you know when the show will start and when it will end and this makes one’s planning extremely efficient. So, after the NIGHTWISH show at Aragon, there was plenty of time to drive to Cobra Lounge and catch the headliners of a really nice billing that we had to miss. However, we would catch PROFESSOR BLACK and that was a great reason to stop listening to our body and go for a Metal overdose. You see, sometimes the mind wants more, but the flesh doesn’t follow, and I will blame age for this...

The venue had a good number of people inside and obviously the beer had been flowing to keep everyone hydrated and ready for more Metal. So, after catching our breath for a while, it was time for PROFESSOR BLACK to hit the stage, and in case this name does not ring any bells, then know that the driving force is Chris Black of the HIGH SPIRITS / DAWNBRINGER / SUPERCHRIST fame. “Are you ready for Rock ‘n’ Roll?” was the rhetorical question Chris asked and he got a primitive “Yeah” and some beer in the air as the proper response followed by the MOTÖRHEAD-esque “Make You Famous”. Really, there was nothing else to say or do other than put the pedal to the Metal with this Lemmy-inspired lyrics and the Punk attitude that is so missed from almost all the young Metal bands. Having a gig stripped down to the basics created a killer antithesis with what we had experienced with NIGHTWISH some hours ago. And believe it or not, this made our experience even better, so going into headbanging mode was the most logical thing to do. The onstage energy quickly bounced of the happy audience and gained some serious momentum by keeping the breaks between the songs short. Yeah, “Act Alone” (is there some RUNNING WILD DNA in there? Hell yeah, there is!) and the SUPERCHRIST hit “Stand Up And Shit” were the perfect opportunity for some moshing. Ok, it may not have been the proper moshing (come on, a couple of guys pushing others does not really count) but it boosted up the underground atmosphere and spilt more beer on the venue’s floor. I have no idea how or even why, but songs like “Hurry Up And Bleed” and “None For You” make people sing-along and fist-pump in the air like there’s no tomorrow. Well, I lied, I do know why and it is something that I believe is missing nowadays; straightforward-structured songs with tongue-in-cheek lyrics and a boatload of energy that goes so well with your beer on a Friday night.

The fast guitar rhythm with and epic twist drew our attention towards METALUSAFER and to the fists-in-air “Heavy Metal Hammer”. Is there a MANOWAR finishing touch (or should I say ‘punch’) there? Hell yeah, there is! “I am sorry that these songs smell so bad” said Chris joking about the age of those tunes that, to be honest, have more youth in them than the majority of new music we are getting from young bands, and I hope you see the oxymoron in this statement. A sip of water was enough to oil Chris’ throat before paying a visit to “Defenders Of The Filth” with the you’ve-got-to-love-that-title “Peace Of Ass”… How can you keep a straight face seeing Chris introducing this one by saying “a nice peace of ass” and pointing at himself? And then, it was time to become philosophers and paraphrase the “my way or the highway” into “My Way Is The Law”. Oh my goodness, how awesome did the opening riff sounded... Yup, this was Friday night out alright! The poetic “Too P**K To Fuck” was next, but just before the chorus, a guy showed up wanting to get onstage… “Come on, this is not the place for stage diving” but seconds later I recognized that familiar…. hood. Hell yeah, Athenar from almighty MIDNIGHT stormed the stage without his bass but with a beer in hand, grabbed the mic stand and started singing. All hell broke loose with beer flying all over, the mic stand getting destroyed, bottles of waters on the floor but the mood was higher than before. Things like that do not happen often and when they do, makes you absolutely happy for being part of this scene. This is the perfect representation of being honest and dedicated to Metal. “I have no idea what just happened” said Chris and, to be honest, none of us did... The ZÜÜL cover on “Warriors” restored some of the order with “No Color” and the killer “Aim Low” being powerful follow-ups.

The setlist was getting close to drop the curtain and this happened with “To Hell And Black” and a second reprise for “Aim Low”. As I said, the body had its objections for going to a concert after a concert but as RAVEN say it was “mind over matter” and in the end, the body felt ten times younger than it did before. And this, my friends, is how Metal works!

PROFESSOR BLACK setlist:

01. “Make You Famous”
02. “Act Alone”
03. “Stand Up And Shit”
04. “Hurry Up And Bleed”
05. “None For You”
06. “Heavy Metal Hammer”
07. “PAMF”
08. “Peace Of Ass”
09. “Still Not Drunk Enough”
10. “My Way Is The Law”
11. “Too P**K To Fuck”
12. “Warriors” (ZÜÜL song)
13. “No Color”
14. “Aim Low”
15. “Aim Low” (reprise)
16. “To Hell And Black”
17. “Aim Low” (re-reprise)

PROFESSOR BLACK

Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos)
Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos) Professor Black @ Cobra Lounge, Chicago (US) (photos by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos)

(click to enlarge)