Summerfest! It runs June 26-30, and July 2-7! Over that 11-day span, approximately 800 acts will perform on 10 stages (not to mention all the side stages). With that much entertainment packed into such a tight window, we understand if you’re stressing about how to Fest to the best of your ability.
In an effort to help you make some potentially difficult Summerfest decisions, Milwaukee Record will offer some Record Recommendations for each and every day of Summerfest, including a suggested headliner, a reason to show up early, a can’t-miss local act, and a tip for a way to have a cheaper and/or better experience. Here are our Record Recommendations for Summerfest Day 5.
10 p.m. @ Miller Lite Oasis
Have you ever rooted around in your closet and dug up an old CD binder from the early 2000s? Have you ever found a mix CD in there titled “Stuff I Like”? Have you ever listened to that CD in your car (your car still has a CD player) and discovered that it is indeed filled with stuff you like? Have you ever found one song, however, that is completely unfamiliar? Have you ever figured out that that song is by The National? Have you ever then realized that you have been trying to like The National for a very, very long time? Just us? Well, The National are playing Summerfest tonight. Maybe they’ll finally stick.
Guided By Voices
4 p.m. @ Miller Lite Oasis
Unless we’re mistaken, the last time Guided By Voices played Summerfest was…2002? When they opened for The Promise Ring? Wow. Anyway, Guided By Voices are one of the best bands—Dayton-based or otherwise—in the history of recorded music. Robert Pollard is a genius. Bee Thousand, Alien Lanes, and a handful of earlier and later albums (Isolation Drills!) are stone-cold classics. The group has released 8,000 records. This mid-afternoon show is gonna rule. GBV!
8 p.m. @ Briggs & Stratton Big Backyard
We Don’t Dance (Anymore), Platinum Boys’ follow-up to 2017’s BUZZ, is a potent three-pack of songs from the rowdy Milwaukee rock outfit. The title track and EP opener starts the seven-inch off strong with chugging guitars and a revelrous melody that seems to work in direct opposition of the song’s anti-dancing sentiment. “Keep On/Keepin On” keeps the party going with the band sharing vocal duties on optimistic lyrics about letting the “good times roll every single day.” Wailing guitars and frantic drum fills punctuate closer “Oblivious Obvious” to cement this 10-minute effort’s “all killer, no filler” standing.
• From noon until 3 p.m., be among the first 2,500 patrons to bring three “nutritious, non-perishable food items for kids.” Suggested items include “canned chicken or tuna, fruits canned in 100% juice, and low sodium vegetables.”
• From noon until 3 p.m., if you’re active-duty military personnel or a veteran, bring your military ID to the designated turnstile at any gate. Good for up to four family members, too.