Toxic Holocaust. Midnight. Marquis Theater. 05.28.12

Where was everyone last night?

When I walked into The Marquis Theater just before 9:30pm, I was met by an empty bar and a few dudes in black leather jackets.  The guys from Midnight were on stage setting up gear before a brief soundcheck.  The place was dark and dead.  I had expected a crowd for the sleaze master’s Denver debut.  It seems they did as well.  When the trio reemerged from behind their black banner, you couldn’t see the disappointment on their faces because they were hidden behind hoods and masks, but after paying tribute to the “Satanic Royalty”, they made comments about the lack of energy in the small crowd.  ‘Fuck it, we don’t need your support, we have jock straps‘  From that point on, there would be no more dwelling on the number of people in the crowd.  The faceless hid their disappointment behind a wall of blackened thrash metal — “Black Rock’n’Roll”, “Lust Filth and Sleaze”, “All Hail Hell”.  There might have been only a few people in front of that stage, but those few were devoted followers — fists and horns in the air, heads banging so hard they were sure to snap a neck.  As the set went on, the energy built, until the filthy explosion of “Endless Slut” — a small, moustached man couldn’t take it anymore and started slamming into everyone, trying his best to start a pit, but every time sometime pushed back, the dude would go flying and land on his ass.  The aborted pit was a failure, but you have to respect the action — Midnight were absolutely slaying it up there and the desire to hit something was overwelming.

The lack of people and energy was disappointing, but the band was tight as fuck, and those diehards at the stage made up for the empty abyss behind them.  I hope to see Midnight come to the Mile High City again sometime soon.  Maybe next time it won’t be on a Monday after a holiday weekend.  Maybe next time it won’t be right after Maryland Death Festival.  Just a few minutes after their set ended, a mass of people showed up out front, including the guys from Speedwolf.  They had just come from the airport where their flight was delayed from Baltimore.  The pissed off crowd out front was larger than the crowd inside for the set — pissed off because the band they came to see had just finished.

As I made my way back inside, I was going against the stream of people heading out.  Even though Midnight had a small showing, it seems they were the draw of the night.  Many of those who showed up late didn’t bother coming in.  Most of those diehards in the front row were now leaving as Joel Grind was on stage getting setup.  It didn’t take long before the lights went down and the band started things off with “Wild Dogs”.  Must like the set before them, Toxic Holocaust just powered on, thrashing through song after song with very little acknowledgment to the small, but attentive crowd.  Once again, everyone was tight as hell, especially on “I Am Disease”, “666” and “Endless Armageddon”, but it was during “Nuke the Cross” that the most realized pit of the night got going — it might not have lasted long, but it was the necessary spark that led into “Bitch” and closed the night out right!

Sometimes small crowds and short sets work out alright.  I left my house at 9pm and was home just after 11pm.  I saw two great bands that are leading the new school of thrash metal.  I was able to get to bed by midnight, making for an easy start to the short week.  It’s just too bad Denver couldn’t have shown more support on this particular night.

Midnight:
Satanic Royalty
Black Rock’n’Roll
Lust Filth and Sleaze
All Hail Hell
Violence on Violence
You Can’t Stop Steel
Endless Slut
?

Toxic Holocaust:
Wild Dogs
Reaper’s Grave
Death Brings Death
I Am Disease
In The Name Of Science
666
Agony of the Damned
Endless Armageddon
The Lord of the Wasteland
Nuke the Cross
Bitch