Logan Square Auditorium – Chicago, IL
When I first took on the assignment of shooting The Black Lips I was not too thrilled about them. In fact, it turned into dread as their performance approached. I had listened to them a few times and decided that their self-described genre of “flower punk” was outside of my comfort range.
I was a bit shocked that they’ve been in the industry for quite a while already and they recorded 5 albums and releasing their 6th album, Arabia Mountain, this summer. They have slowly built up a fan-base that definitely appreciates their style. This was definitely apparent in the crowd’s reaction towards their presence.
Walking into the Logan Square Auditorium, it felt like I was stepping back in time to a 90’s high school dance. Even the opening performance by Vivian Girls seemed fitting. The all girl band from Brooklyn got the crowd’s attention and more. Bombshell Kickball Katy (aka Katy Goodman) is certainly no stranger to the cat-calling from the guys as she playfully turned down their unsolicited suggestions. After playing a few songs into their set, the moshing began which was a small indication of what was yet to come.
The moment the Black Lips came on stage the crowd went wild. They made their entrance, high-fiving their front row fans. They broke into their set with “Sea of Blasphemy.” Many of the songs they played were from their new album, Arabia Mountain, but they also made room for classics. By then the crowd was in full drive as the moshing intensified while drinks flew through the air and fans surfed the crow. During their most popular hit “Bad Kids,” the audience participated in a classic stage invasion take-over while the band continued to rock.
It was impressive to see the interaction between band and fans as the energy radiated around the room. I caught the mania and can now say that they were loud, they were aggressive, and they were awesome!
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