Creating the blackest of Black Fridays

What better band to open the main stage of a hypothetical Black Friday event – sponsored by Guinness – than the first all-African-American heavy metal band Black Death (the original line-up, not the current diluted version) ripping through their self-titled 1984 debut in its entirety, followed by a surprise reunion of Jeff Walker’s short-lived post-Carcass death ‘n’ roll grind-boogie combo Blackstar, and sets from Ultramantis Black, Black Trip, Black Tusk, Black Magician, Black Moth, Black Cobra and The Black Dahlia Murder.

Meanwhile, on the Classic Rock stage (sponsored by Black & Decker, for all your blackest DIY needs) there will be sets by Blackberry Smoke, Black ‘N Blue, Blackfoot, Black Oak Arkansas, Black Star Riders, The Black Crowes and a headline set by occult prog nutters Black Widow, staging their infamous back mass for the first time in four decades. The None More Black stage (sponsored by the Bury Black Pudding Company) will be devoted to only the blackest-of-the-black black metal, culminating in the original Venom line-up performing their Black Metal LP in its entirety (perhaps the least likely, and most longed-for, scenario in this entire fantasy schedule).

Throughout the day the Black Friday Film Club will be screening a variety of black-themed movies (many of them in black-and-white with the white bits removed), including horror classics like The Black Cat (1934), Black Sunday (1960), Black Friday (1940), Black Sabbath (1963), The Black Torment (1964) and Black Christmas (1974), plus a smattering of film noir titles including Black Legion (1934), Black Angel (1946), Blackmail (1947), Black Dice (1948), Black Hand (1950), Black 13 (1953), Black Tuesday (1954), and Bad Day At Black Rock (1955) as well as a host of Blaxploitation classics such as Blacula (1972), Blackenstein (1973), Black Belt Jones (1974), Black Emanuelle (1975), Black Gestapo (1975), Black Shampoo (1976) and Black Samurai (1977). There will also be ‘another chance to see episodes’ from the TV archives of Blackadder, Black Books, Boys From The Black Stuff and The Adventures Of Black Beauty. Black Forest Gateau and blackcurrant cordial will be on sale in the cinema, as well as copious amounts of black coffee (want milk? Tough luck mate, you’ll have it black or not at all).

Back on the main stage, after Bay Area thrash kings Testament perform Souls Of Black in its entirety and New York thrash kings Overkill play all of I Hear Black, it’s time for the Black Friday All-Stars, a one-off supergroup featuring WASP’s Blackie Lawless, ex-Voivod bassist Blacky, Katatonia guitarist Anders ‘Blakkheim’ Nystrom and Thorns guitarist Snorre ‘Blackthorn’ Ruch – performing a set-list of heavily black-based classic songs, including: Deep Purple’s Black Night, Led Zep’s Black Dog, Black Diamond by Kiss, Black Magic by Slayer, Paint It Black by the Stones, Blackout by Scorpions, Sworn To The Black by Morbid Angel, Emperor’s I Am The Black Wizards, Electric Wizard’s Wizard In Black, Cirith Ungol’s Black Machine, Status Quo’s Black Veils Of Melancholy, Queen’s March Of The Black Queen, Blackbird by The Beatles, Blackbird by The Wurzels, Black Steel In The Hour Of Chaos by Public Enemy, Ram Jam’s Black Betty, Repulsion’s Black Breath, Thin Lizzy’s Black Rose, Metallica’s Blackened and, rather more laterally, Motörhead’s Ace Of Spades.

Concluding the Black Friday Fest will be sets by Black Label Society, Black Flag and, inevitably, Black Sabbath playing Black Sabbath in its entirety. Black Friday Fest will ideally take place in Blackpool. Throughout the day there will be graffiti competitions, with prizes going to the blackest mural, plus a shadow puppet stall and (somewhat controversially) a blackface-painting tent. And even though that’s clearly a terrible idea, this would still be a far more exciting and suitable event with the ‘Black Friday’ branding than the current ghastly cynical corporate American exercise in pre-Christmas price-slashing currently shouting at us from shop windows, televisions, radios and worldwide net-webs.

Chris Chantler

Chris has been writing about heavy metal since 2000, specialising in true/cult/epic/power/trad/NWOBHM and doom metal at now-defunct extreme music magazine Terrorizer. Since joining the Metal Hammer famileh in 2010 he developed a parallel career in kids' TV, winning a Writer's Guild of Great Britain Award for BBC1 series Little Howard's Big Question as well as writing episodes of Danger Mouse, Horrible Histories, Dennis & Gnasher Unleashed and The Furchester Hotel. His hobbies include drumming (slowly), exploring ancient woodland and watching ancient sitcoms.