The A.V. Club’s Milwaukee fall concert preview
Get yourself ready for one of the city's best seasons for live music
Summer has the music festivals, but fall is perhaps the best time for live music in Milwaukee. This year appears to be no different—looking ahead on the concert calendar that are tons of shows worth circling the calendar for … as well as some worth immediately crossing off your list. To help you wade through all the choices, The A.V. Club is here to separate the proverbial wheat from the chaff. (Chances are, more shows will be added to the calendar before the end of the year, so be sure to check milwaukee.avclub.com for the latest updates.)
Don’t miss: It’s the end of summer, we have months of cold weather ahead of us, and the only appropriate thing to do at this point is to get naked and roll around together to the sounds of Lil Wayne (Sept. 2, Marcus Amphitheater). You should be getting out of jail right around the time Built To Spill (Sept. 27, Turner Hall) comes to town.
Don’t miss… if you can: Pet Shop Boys (Sept. 15, Pabst Theater) haven’t put out a classic song in at least 10 years—and that’s being generous—but the icy duo’s collection of hits rivals any dance-pop group. People were scratching their heads all over town when Kings Of Leon (Sept. 26, Bradley Center) were booked in the city’s largest room. Is that “Sex On Fire” song really that popular?
Miss away: The only people who benefit from the reunion of Creed (Sept. 1, Bradley Center) is Nickelback, who can now rest easy over no longer being the world’s most annoying cock-rock band.
Other notable shows: Slipknot and Anthrax (Sept. 5, The Rave/Eagles Ballroom); Happy Mondays and Psychedelic Furs (Sept. 9, Pabst Theater); Marilyn Manson (Sept. 15, The Rave/Eagles Club); Sugarland (Sept. 18, Bradley Center); Alice In Chains (Sept. 20, The Rave/Eagles Club); Arctic Monkeys (Sept. 26, The Rave/Eagles Club)
Don’t miss: Metal fans would rise up and firebomb our office if we didn’t immediately mention the awesome Mastodon and Dethklok show (Oct. 18, The Rave/Eagles Ballroom). Also highly anticipated is Andrew Bird’s two-night stand (Oct. 16-17, Pabst Theater)—one show will be solo, the other with a band, and both should be pretty great.
Don’t miss … if you can: The Gaslight Anthem (Oct. 4, Turner Hall) already visited Milwaukee in April, but if you missed that show you’ll want to catch these Springsteen-loving Jersey punks on the rebound. While Phish recently reunited to reclaim its jam-band crown, Yonder Mountain String Band (Oct. 21, The Rave/Eagles Ballroom) is probably the best band in that scene at the moment.
Miss away: At the risk of provoking Juggalos to rise up and firebomb our office, Insane Clown Posse (Oct. 24, The Rave/Eagles Ballroom) is more skippable than an episode of Heroes at this point.
Other notable shows: Umphrey’s McGee (Oct. 3, The Rave/Eagles Ballroom); Hope Sandoval (Oct. 4, Pabst Theater); Colbie Caillat (Oct. 5, Pabst Theater); Hanson and Hellogoodbye (Oct. 5, The Rave/Eagles Club); Portugal. The Man (Oct. 9, Turner Hall); STS9 (Oct. 9, The Rave/Eagles Club); Miley Cyrus (Oct. 10, Bradley Center); Rob Thomas (Oct. 10, Riverside Theater); Bon Iver (Oct. 11, Riverside Theater); AC/DC (Oct. 14, Bradley Center); Kelly Clarkson (Oct. 23, Milwaukee Theatre); Brian Wilson (Oct. 24, Pabst Theater); Loudon Wainwright III and Richard Thompson (Oct. 30, Pabst Theater)
Don’t miss: Fans of The Jesus Lizard (Nov. 24, Turner Hall) probably assumed that one of the most explosive bands of the ’90s would never play live again after it broke up in 1999. Hopefully this reunion gig will live up to the hype. Speaking of hype, countless tales of the live prowess of Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band (Nov. 15, Bradley Center) have been told over the years and, incredibly, the aging classic rockers keep on bringing it even as they enter their 60s.
Don’t miss … if you can: Believe it or not but the original incarnation of Dinosaur Jr. (Nov. 19, Turner Hall) seems to have picked up where it left off in the ’80s on this year’s Farm, which has become one of the band’s most acclaimed albums. Also rejuvenated of late is The Black Crowes (Nov. 6, Riverside Theater), who ought to put on a rock show straight out of Almost Famous.
Miss away: If you’re a fan of Lamb Of God or GWAR (Nov. 6, The Rave/Eagles Club), chances are you saw them back when either band was worth caring about.