Milwaukee is chock full of things to do, but only a handful of Milwaukee events are worthy of the lofty honor of “Record Recommended” (patent pending). Here are our recommendations—brought to you by Lilliput Records—for May 20-26, 2024.


Grocer + Operations, Dogs In Ecstasy, Lightninging @ Cactus Club
“Grocer is a band from Philadelphia. Lead by three distinct vocalists, each with a unique voice both on and off their respective instruments, they flicker between moments of brash chromaticism, saccharine pop sensibility, and rhythmic acrobatics. Their compositions are both meticulous and volatile, while their live performances are lauded for explosive chemistry with cheeky curiosity. Just on the heels of the release of their formative EP, Scatter Plot, the band returned to their subterranean laboratory to further prod and pull at their musical specimens. On their new LP, Bless Me, the band emerges with some striking discoveries. Palpable melodic figures interact with an ever shifting landscape of rhythmic and harmonic structures.”


Greta Van Fleet + Geese @ Fiserv Forum
“Greta Van Fleet’s most recent studio album Starcatcher is out now on Lava/Republic Records. Of the new album, lead singer Josh Kiszka states, ‘Starcatcher is a dangerous and delightful expedition into a both violent and gentle dreamlike landscape. A purgatory of duality where brutality and beauty clash like a thunderstorm of stillness. Neither fact nor fiction inhabit the far reaches of this surrealist world. A storybook for the fighters and lovers alike Starcatcher captures a certain wonder on the fringe of mayhem.'”

Blueprint + Taiyamo Denku, Guerrilla Ghost, Dukalion, Mad Static @ X-Ray Arcade
Veteran Midwest rapper Blueprint brings his decades of material to Cudahy! The Tuesday night show at X-Ray Arcade also features oodles of stellar local support from Taiyamo Denku, Guerrilla Ghost, Dukalion, and Mad Static.

somesurprises + CREDENTIALS, Standstill @ Cactus Club

Rock Paper Scissors League (Grande Finale) @ Company Brewing


Messa + Hello Death, Asatta @ Cactus Club
“Messa play evoking doom metal with middle-eastern vibes. Deliciously haunting female vocals, ’70s guitars and arabian oudh combine to conjure a suond that is all of their own. With influences as diverse as Dead Can Dance, Om, Swans, Killing Joke, Electric Wizard, Thergothon, Current 93, the band has moved from the first occult then noir-tinted doom metal of their previous works to a new atmospheric mediterranean sound which is unique. The evolution is clearly showcased in their record Close.”

Saxon & Uriah Heep @ The Pabst Theater

LustSickPuppy + Prolaps, Cyrus Chrome @ Promises


Beams + Ellie Jackson, Aya @ Cactus Club
“Beams is a psychedelic folk-rock band that formed in 2011 in Toronto, Canada. Their beguiling sound pairs the stunning harmonization of female voices with the shimmering textures of banjo and vibraphone, earning them comparisons to artists ranging from Wilco, Fleetwood Mac and Kate Bush, to Big Thief, Waxahatchee, and Kevin Morby. The six-member group has toured across North America, and these restless, ambitious creatives are set to release their third full-length, Ego Death in March 2021.”

Lords Of Acid + Praga Khan @ The Rave / Eagles Club

Toni Romiti @ X-Ray Arcade

Big Beat MKE @ The Wicked Hop


Diet Lite (tour kickoff) + Creeping Charlie, Rat Bath @ Cactus Club
Milwaukee indie-rock band Diet Lite never half-asses it. The group’s albums, videos, and live shows are all dialed to the max, full of life and energy and occasional crowd surfing. So when the time came to release a DIY tour documentary, did Diet Lite slap 20 minutes of footage together and put it on YouTube? No, Diet Lite did not. Enter Stumble Out The Gate, a recent 90-minute documentary of Diet Lite’s first regional tour, which the band undertook in July 2022. The film, directed by Bridger Flory, premiered last fall at No Studios.

Vanity Plates (record release) + Buena Cara, Beauty Steps @ Linneman’s Riverwest Inn
“Vanity Plates: post-butt-rock for fans of Jeopardy but not the college tournament!! Three-piece rock band from Milwaukee, WI featuring Pete Ciolino on bass, Shane Timm on drums, and Alex Shah on guitar and vocals.”

Ralph Barbosa @ The Pabst Theater
While he’s relatively new on the scene, Texas comedian Ralph Barbosa is quickly establishing himself as one of standup’s most promising names by way of his smooth delivery and self-effacing material. Watch Barbosa at The Pabst Theater when the comic comes to town as part of “The Super Cool Ass Tour!”

Knowledge Fight with Dan & Jordan – Live Podcast Recording @ X-Ray Arcade (sold out)

Caterwaul MKE: Art Gray Noizz + Part Chimp, Cougars, CNTS, Bronson Arm, Isolation T.E., Primitive Broadcast Service @ Club Garibaldi

Moonglow + Hanna Simone, Josh Trimble And The Juice @ Anodyne Walker’s Point Roastery

The Taxmen + The Panoptics @ Company Brewing

Radio Radio 15th Anniversary Blowout @ The Cooperage

The Get Down @ Quarters Rock ‘n Roll Palace

Friday Night Retro Mixtape @ Mad Planet


North Warren (record release) + Doubter, The Nile Club, Okay Omen @ Vivarium
“North Warren is an indie/emo/power-pop band from Milwaukee, WI. Formed by Luke Esperes in 2019, the music consists of raw overdriven guitars, fuzzed out bass lines with an accompaniment of emotive lyrics with catchy hooks. Their first two singles ‘USPS’ and ‘Overdramatic’ were released in 2019 followed by a short and sweet eight-song self titled debut album in March of 2020. Since then, North Warren has released a four-song EP titled Glue, a couple singles which were mixed by the one and only Steve Albini, along with their most recent release—a split EP with Milwaukee band Doubter.”

Djunah + Flooding, Sleepersound, Spoy @ X-Ray Arcade
“Chicago-based noise rock project Djunah spotlights the talents of Donna Diane, who pulls triple duty, simultaneously playing guitar, singing, and pulverizing a Moog bass organ with her foot—a feat some have described as ‘mind-blowing.’ Known for a massive, intense live sound, Djunah is fueled as much by big emotions as it is by love of gear. Diane, who has been featured on Premiere Guitar’s Rig Rundown, is a self-described gearhead who learned to build footswitches to make simultaneously playing both instruments possible.”

Emmitt James vs. Genesis Renji + DJ Gemini Gilly @ Cactus Club
“Join us at Cactus Club on May 25th at 6:30 PM for an electrifying showdown between two of the hottest talents in the Milwaukee music scene! It’s an epic versus battle featuring the incomparable Emmitt James and the unstoppable Genesis Renji, as they go head-to-head to determine who reigns supreme as the ultimate artist and performer. Prepare to witness a clash of creativity, passion, and raw talent as Emmitt James and Genesis Renji take the stage to showcase their lyrical prowess, captivating stage presence, and dynamic performances. With each artist bringing their A-game, expect nothing short of an unforgettable evening filled with adrenaline-pumping beats and unforgettable moments.”

Renonce + Total Chroma, Choke Chain @ Quarters Rock ‘n Roll Palace

Denude + Hiking Journal, Key Of Evil @ Bremen Cafe

Milwaukee Oddities & Curiosities Expo @ Baird Center

BikerFest Block Party @ Deer District

Funk Night: Funk Summit Bass Team + Modern Joey, Wurk @ Mad Planet


Brainiac + Exit Angles, IfIHadAHiFi @ X-Ray Arcade
Brainiac is coming to Cudahy, people! The influential, enigmatic band and the pride of Dayton, Ohio will be joined by Exit Angles and Milwaukee’s own IfIHadAHiFi on this standout Memorial Day weekend show. Don’t miss it!

Peace Through Music: The Music Of John Lennon @ Linneman’s Riverwest Inn

Ambient Matinee: Apollo Vermouth + Eli Smith, Energy Runner, Wandering Nerve, Hoovobot @ Cactus Club

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