The Toxenes rock, BNLX returns, and I fail Mark Mallman at the Uptown VFW


Amazing how driving a few blocks can change one’s scenery. Well that and staying up past bedtime :). Last night I left the squeaky-clean world of Christian Rock at the Target Center and descended into the pit of debauchery that is the Uptown VFW to see one of my favorite local bands return after a baby hiatus: BNLX

Getting things off to a proper start were the Toxenes. The trio played a 30-minute set of their punk / surf rock at their signature blistering pace. They gave their audience one slow song as a break “before it gets to rowdy, as they put it” and closed out their set going full speed again.

The first time I saw BNLX was one of their last shows before going on a baby break. Some of their songs burned into my brain and to this day I still turn up the volume every time Vibrant or Barricades comes up on my playlist. So seeing them back after almost 2 years had me just a little bit excited. The trio set up their signature light effects and started their set like no time had passed at all.
The new song “Resist, Resist!” was well received. On the recording, they chorus is sung by BNLX friends from all over the world, live the crowd gave it a respectable effort. “The Devil You Know” was delivered hard and fast. As one fan in the crowd shouted “Rock’n Roll” Ed, responded “That’s right! That’s what’s on the agenda”
Needless to say, I got my BNLX fix and hopefully won’t have to wait another 2 years for my next one.
Set List: No Soul / Penny Drops / Vibrant / 1929 / Resist, Resist / Barricades / Everything Must Go / Do Without / Blue And Gold / Burn The Boats / Light It Up

Mark Mallman started his set after midnight, and much to my shame my day caught up to me. Having started at 6 AM and not slowed down all day, I fought dozing off between sets. There was little chance of that happening once he got started of course but I knew if I stayed the hole set me, my car, and all the lovely pictures I took would end up wrapped around a tree somewhere. Mallman “invited” anyone who had a problem with the large peace sign to enjoy the fresh air OUTSIDE the VFW. He is one of the most energetic performers out there and the things he does to this keyboard……. I caught the first 4-5 songs before running out of energy and judging by what I saw, fans enjoyed one heck of a show after that.
Set List: Humankind / True Love / The End Is Not The End / Hook Hand / Trying To Fight Fire / You’re Never Alone NYC / Hardcore Romantics / Tell It To The Judge / Who’s Gonna Save You / Dirty Dishes / White Letter Days / Invicible Criminal / Monster Movies Encore: Parasite Eyes