Welcome to the weekend: July 26-28
This week’s run of cool-ish temperatures may suggest that fall is right around the corner, lurking like that one girl you had a crush on in high school who was way into The Nightmare Before Christmas, and who invited you over to her house one fateful Halloween night only to make you watch a VHS copy of The Dark Crystal and tell you she was getting married in three weeks, and would you mind helping her and her fiancé find a place to crash? But no, fall is still a few months off (and that girl is now simply another easily hidden Facebook friend), and this weekend is stuffed with plenty of summer-rific diversions to prove it.
In the mood for some neighborhood and/or ethnic fests? The City of Festivals ain’t fucking around. German Fest kicks off later this afternoon at Henry Maier Festival Park, and runs through July 28. Not to be outdone, the last bastion of Milwaukee bohemia, Brady Street, hosts its annual Brady Street Festival on Saturday. Trapper Schoepp And The Shades, Hugh Bob And The Hustle, and Vic And Gab are just a few of the musical highlights.
So let’s say you’re into this whole “live music” thing. Then you’ll definitely want to check out Milwaukee’s premiere schlock-rockers, Drugs Dragons (as well as Twin Cities duo Birthday Suits), tonight at the Cactus Club. The always-incredible Sugar Stems are also playing tonight (their latest LP, Can’t Wait, is easily one of the best Milwaukee releases of the year), opening for power-pop legends Shoes at Shank Hall. For more power-pop/Shank Hall goodness, the one and only Matthew Sweet stops by the club Saturday, hot on the heels of his recent Girlfriend 20th anniversary tour.
Another can’t-miss Saturday show is Buffalo Gospel at Linneman’s. The Americana-drenched band (featuring Ryan Necci, Heidi Spencer, and Allen Coté, among others) will celebrate the release of its terrific new album, We Can Be Horses. Opener Jonathan Burks will be along for the dusty, twang-y ride.
Looking to relax on Sunday? You’re out of luck, Sally, because the indie darlings/musical chameleons of Foxygen are stopping by Turner Hall Sunday night. (Be sure to check out our review of the show Monday morning.) And if new music isn’t your bag, there’s always Steely Dan at the Riverside, we suppose.
Finally, this weekend finds two special events paying their respects to the transformative power of the wheel. Bay View’s Sky High skateboard shop celebrates its 25 anniversary at Mad Planet Saturday night (check out our feature story here), with music provided by the DJs of Dope Folks Records (look for our Dope Folks 10th anniversary feature in the upcoming weeks). And then there’s the Riverwest 24, of course, which hits the ground running tonight at 7 p.m. Check out our survival guide to the race here, and brace yourself for another ridiculous, jam-packed, and hopefully awkward-encounter-with-high-school-crush-free weekend in Milwaukee.