Our fat-free, dolphin-safe Milwaukee events calendar is chock-full of things to do, but only a handful of events are worthy of the lofty honor of “Record Recommended” (patent pending). Here are our recommendations for January 16-22, 2023.


Martin Luther King Jr. Day @ various locations
Find a list of local events honoring the life and legacy of Dr. King HERE.


Social Cig + M.A.G.S., Barely Civil @ Cactus Club
We’ll be the first to admit that we’ve been sleeping on Social Cig. The Parker Schultz-fronted indie-rock project had a big 2022, releasing the full-length CHEESEHEAD, receiving plenty of local acclaim, and playing a slew of high-profile shows (opening for the Wet Leg show at The Pabst Theater, selling out a headlining show at The Back Room). But sleep on Social Cig we shall do no longer! Check him out live tonight at Cactus Club, where he’ll be joined by L.A.-based M.A.G.S. and Milwaukee’s own Barely Civil.


Argopelter + Caley Conway @ Boone & Crockett
Argopelter is an improvised experimental trio composed of Barry Paul Clark (bass), Devin Drobka (drums), and Christopher Porterfield (guitar). The group’s frequent residencies at Boone & Crockett are always appointment viewing/listening, especially when coupled with incomparable singer-songwriter Caley Conway. The musicians’ winter residency continues tonight, with shows on February 8 and February 12 to follow.

King Buffalo + Lume @ The Back Room @ Colectivo

The Brother Brothers + Rainbow Cobra, Dialogues @ Cactus Club


Midweek Music: The Steph Lippert Project @ Crafty Cow MKE
Instead of making you wait until spring before our Midweek Music series continues, Crafty Cow is warming up your winter by bringing the free concert series back for seven more shows spread throughout the months of January, February, and March.
This time around, the concerts will take place at Crafty Cow’s location in Bay View (2675 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.). Another major change is the shows will now happen on Thursday nights instead of Wednesdays. Thursday also happens to be Crafty Cow’s Burger Night,’ with discounts offered on build-your-own cheeseburgers. As usual, pints of Indeed Brewing Company beer will be available for only $4 during all Midweek Music shows. Things kick off tonight with the always excellent Steph Lippert Project.

SV Presents: Dazy + FOOTBALLHEAD, Graham Hunt Band @ Cactus Club


Mondo Lucha! @ The Cooperage
A few months after yet another Turner Hall sellout, the Mondo Lucha folks bring the ring to The Cooperage for a more intimate (but equally entertaining) blend of wrestling, burlesque, and music. “See all your favorite MONDO LUCHA! superstars in a fan immersive experience that will be full of thrills and spills!”

SHAQ’s Bass All-Stars @ The Rave / Eagles Ballroom
Roughly 15 months removed from headlining the Miller Lite Oasis at last year’s Summerfest, DJ Diesel (a.k.a. Hall Of Fame basketball player and cultural icon Shaquille O’Neal) returns to Milwaukee to get behind the turntables and dole out some jams at The Rave. Featuring Valentino Kahn and Celo, this show was originally scheduled for New Year’s Eve.

Primitive Broadcast Service + Critical Mass, Bunk Bed @ Club Garibaldi
There are days when you want to listen to music that lifts your spirits and leaves you feeling good about life. Then there are days when you want to listen to music that leaves you feeling like you just got done working a 12-hour shift in an abandoned factory and need a shower. If you’re in the mood for the latter, look no further than Milwaukee’s Primitive Broadcast Service. The group’s second full-length, Colors For Chameleons, was released in 2021.

WMSE’s Friday Night Freak Show: Labyrinth @ Times Cinema
You remind me of the babe. What babe? The babe with the power. What power? The power of voodoo. If you do want to see Labyrinth at the Times tonight, get there early—a David Bowie-heavy WMSE DJ set will begin at 6:30 p.m.

The Nile Club (record release) + Barflord, North Warren, Shoobie, Riotnine @ Linneman’s Riverwest Inn

Gel + Big Laugh, Payasa, meth. @ X-Ray Arcade

Gallery Night & Day @ various locations


Inside A Dream: The Music Of David Lynch @ The Cooperage
Following an incredible initial re-imagining of music from David Lynch films, the “Inside A Dream” showcase takes the stage at The Cooperage once again. Expect renditions of compositions Lynch fans will surely recognize from works like Twin Peaks, Blue Velvet, Mulholland Drive, and more. Also, R.I.P. Julee Cruise and Angelo Badalamenti.

IfIHadAHiFi + Fight Dice, Florida Brothers Band, Mdogg Matt Cross DJ set @ X-Ray Arcade
“Death Van! You’re riding in the Death Van!” That’s the chorus to “Death Van” (natch), a standout track on IfIHadAHiFi’s 2019 album We’re Never Going Home. Recorded and mixed at Howl Street Recordings, the record is a typically noisy and chaotic affair, full of high-tension guitar playing, pissed-off drumming, and bursts of room-clearing shouting. But there’s a decidedly mature, socially conscious vibe running through the record, giving songs like “Hot Take On Line One” and “Bigfoot, Take The Wheel” a real-world urgency.

Scam Likely + Scarlet Demore, Diet Lite @ The Back Room @ Colectivo
One of our favorite Milwaukee songs of 2022 was the jittery “Jesus Christ Stop Yelling I’​m Right Here” by Scam Likely. Want to see the band live at tonight’s Back Room show? Good luck, because it’s sold out!

Louie & The Flashbombs + Kitty Soft Paw @ Linneman’s Riverwest Inn

Monster Jam @ Fiserv Forum


Monster Jam @ Fiserv Forum
It’s Day 2 of Monster Jam! “At Monster Jam, world champion athletes and their 12,000-pound monster trucks tear up the dirt in wide-open competitions of speed and skill. Monster Jam drivers are trained, world-class male and female athletes who have mastered not only the physical strength and mental stamina needed to compete, but the vital dexterity to control 12,000-pound machines capable of doing backflips, vertical two-wheel skills and racing at speeds up to 70 miles-per-hour to produce jaw-dropping, live motorsports action seen around the world. Monster Jam. As Big As It Gets!”

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