Milwaukee 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 May 1-7 2023.
MONDAY, MAY 1
2023 Milwaukee Film Festival @ various locations (through May 4)
The 15-day 2023 Milwaukee Film Festival wraps up this week with, well, more movies! Some big ones to look out for: a screening of Enter The Dragon on May 1, complete with a live Cinebuds podcast; and the Closing Night film, A Disturbance In The Force, which delves into the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special. Does the latter screen on May the 4th? Yes it does. Find the full MFF2023 program HERE.
TUESDAY, MAY 2
WMSE’s Local/Live: Trapper Schoepp @ Anodyne Walker’s Point Roastery
Trapper Schoepp’s latest record, Siren Songs, was largely written during the pandemic, at a point in which Schoepp was getting lost down YouTube rabbit holes of videos pertaining to things like open guitar tuning and Irish music of yesteryear. Around that same time, he was diving headlong into the hobby of paddle boarding as a means of coping with isolation. That diverse set of interests all come together beautifully on material that bears traditional folk influences, while also adhering to a loosely nautical theme. Tonight, Schoepp will play some of his Siren Songs (and more!) for this free-to-attend live broadcast of WMSE’s Local/Live.
Fucked Up + Dark Thoughts, Gnawing @ Shank Hall
Canadian post-hardcore outfit Fucked Up recently released its long-awaited sixth album, One Day. Tonight, the seminal band plays Shank Hall! Huh!
WEDNESDAY, MAY 3
An Evening With Alice Cooper @ Miller High Life Theatre
“Remember the classic scene in Wayne’s World in which Wayne and Garth meet their hero Alice Cooper, and the king of shock-rock-n-roll greets them with a history lesson about the origins of Milwaukee? Well, ALICE IS COMING BACK TO MILL-E-WAH-QUE! Live, the dark lord of rock crushes every song you love… ‘No More Mr. Nice Guy,’ ‘I’m 18,’ ‘Elected,’ ‘Feed My Frankenstein,’ ‘Welcome To My Nightmare,’ ‘Billion Dollar Babies,’ and soooo many more. This is not a concert… IT’S AN EXPERIENCE, with a stage show featuring electric chairs, guillotines, fake blood and boa constrictors and more.”
The HIRS Collective + Snag, Lifes, Riotnine! @ X-Ray Arcade
THURSDAY, MAY 4
The New Pornographers + Wild Pink @ Turner Hall
Fans of Canadian supergroups who have been crafting impeccable pop-leaning indie rock for more than two decades take note: The New Pornographers are playing Turner Hall! Made up of A.C. Newman, Neko Case, Kathryn Calder, Todd Fancey, Blaine Thurier, John Collins, Joe Seiders, and Simi Stone, The New Pornographers are one of those bands that have never made a bad album. Seriously: everything from 2000’s Mass Romantic to the just-released Continue As A Guest is great. (Brill Bruisers, from 2014, is an all-timer.)
Milwaukee Psych Fest VIII @ The Cooperage (through May 6)
It’s been a long time coming for Milwaukee Psych Fest VIII. Originally scheduled for the spring of 2020, the eighth installment of the loud, fuzzed-out, and reverb-drenched blowout was canceled due to then-new COVID-19 pandemic. A rescheduled festival was set for the fall of 2021, but that, too, was canceled due to COVID concerns. Now, Milwaukee Psych Fest VIII is (finally!) due to take over The Cooperage May 4-6. The festival’s lineup is well worth the wait.
Humbird + Long Mama @ Cactus Club
Humbird—a Minneapolis-based experimental folk project fronted by Siri Undlin—makes its way back to Milwaukee for another Cream City performance in belated support of 2021’s excellent album, Still Life. Further cementing this event as a can’t-miss outing is opening support from Milwaukee’s own Long Mama, which put out a pretty damn great album of its own in late 2022.
Hog Fest 2023: Disturbed + Falling in Reverse, Beartooth, Dorothy @ Fiserv Forum
Ethan Keller Tour Launch Party @ Company Brewing
Telltale + Sundressed, Brooklane, Gold Steps @ X-Ray Arcade
Silverstein + Dayseeker, SeeYouSpaceCowboy, One Step Closer @ The Rave/Eagles Club
FRIDAY, MAY 5
LUXI + The LOL, Future Trash @ High Dive
LUXI—a.k.a. Alexandre Maxine Hill—has been a consistent presence in the Milwaukee music scene since 2013. Her output has included numerous LPs and EPs, oodles of singles, plenty of videos, and even her own video game. In early 2021, the ever-busy artist collaborated with Lauryl Sulfate on the terrific “Basement Show”; tonight, LUXI and Sulfate’s LOL group team up for a sure-to-be fantastic show at High Dive.
The Quilz + Palm Ghosts, Lavish Waste @ Club Garibaldi
Dead Dead Swans + Dandy L. Freling, Old Wolves @ Linneman’s Riverwest Inn
Half Moon HideAway + Socially Suspect, Handmade Wolves @ Bremen Cafe
SATURDAY, MAY 6
Phantom + Fugitive Bubble, Big Laugh, Innuendo, Tunic @ Cactus Club
“Wild and ferocious, this New Brunswick New Jersey hardcore band presents their dangerous energy and astral projects it onto the scene. Already making waves in the northeast, this band of ruffians is members of….nada. Influenced by Active Ingredients and Honor Role while at the same time sharing sonic space with NASA Space Universe and Dawn of Humans. Already one of the most active bands in their area, make sure to check out Phantom in a city near you.”
Lost Orange Cat + Panalure @ Shank Hall
SUNDAY, MAY 7
Ministry + Gary Numan, Front Line Assembly @ The Rave/Eagles Club
“Industrial juggernauts Ministry are heading back out on the road in 2023 with a series of spring headlining dates, bringing long-time friends Gary Numan and Front Line Assembly along for the ride. The 2023 appearances come after a wildly successful ‘Industrial Strength Tour’ throughout 2022 and will continue to be a career retrospective of Ministry’s greatest works, as the band enters its fifth decade with frontman and creator Al Jourgensen continuing to churn out his indelible missives on the state of the world and society as we know it.”
Connor LaMue + Old Pup, Johanna Rose @ Circle-A Cafe
Daniel Rodriguez + Trapper Schoepp @ Shank Hall
Frühlings Festival @ Sugar Maple
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