Tuesday, August 5: Roadside Graves with Light Music and Christopher Porterfield at Cactus Club, 9 p.m. In a frank admission to indie music blog Aquarium Drunkard, lead singer of the New Jersey-based Americana group Roadside Graves John Gleason described his morning listening habits—reading Pitchfork and listening to a couple songs from each review—and what he […]

Tuesday, August 5: Roadside Graves with Light Music and Christopher Porterfield at Cactus Club, 9 p.m.

In a frank admission to indie music blog Aquarium Drunkard, lead singer of the New Jersey-based Americana group Roadside Graves John Gleason described his morning listening habits—reading Pitchfork and listening to a couple songs from each review—and what he gained from that daily routine—highly lauded, youthful up-and-coming bands all complained about being bored. Gleason, now a seasoned musician and father, remembers feeling “sad, pathetic, confused, covered in acne, and aching for some decent company, but never bored” during his teenage years. The first-released track from Roadside Graves’ upcoming record ACNE/EARS examines this disconnect between generations. On the power pop single, “Body” he, perhaps tongue-in-cheek, sings, “Too be young/ Bored and white/ Alright, alright.”
(2496 S. Wentworth Ave., CactusClubMilwaukee.com)


Also: Aretha Franklin at Wisconsin State Fair Park, 7:30 p.m. ($29-$39) – (640 S. 84th St., WIStateFair.com) 

And: Chill on the Hill featuring The Maji with Fresh Cut Collective & Friends and Roy G and the Bivs at Humboldt Part, 6 p.m. (FREE) – (3000 S. Howell Ave., BayViewNeighborhood.org/Chill_On_The_Hill)

Wednesday, August 6: PHOX with J.E. Sunde and Raw Cassidy at Turner Hall Ballroom, 7 p.m. ($10)

Earning the NPR stamp-of-approval can be a blessing or a curse. The recognition catapults a band to wider audience, but can often lead to being pigeonholed in public radio’s bland, coffeehouse-esque echelon. Thankfully, the Baraboo folk-pop group PHOX seems more than capable of transcending the NPR label the band has gained over the past year or so. It’s not often that Wisconsinites grace the Turner Hall Ballroom and few draw a crowd as well as PHOX. As they seemed destined for bigger stages, catch them in a smaller place before their transcendent rise grows even larger. (1032 N. Fourth St., PabstTheater.org)

Also: Peter Frampton with Survivor at Wisconsin State Fair Park, 7:30 p.m. ($25-$35) – (640 S. 84th St., WIStateFair.com) 

And: Kane Place Record Club at Tonic Tavern, 8 p.m. (FREE) – (2335 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., TonicTavern.com)

And: Northless with North and Old Northwest at Quarters Rock n’ Roll Palace, 9 p.m. – (900 E. Center St.)

Thursday, August 7: Boney James at Potawatomi’s Northern Lights Theater, 8 p.m. (SOLD OUT)

Want to feel sexy? Smooth jazz saxophonist Boney James can do the trick. His studio albums resemble titles to romance novels—Pure, Ride, Contact, Sweet Thing, Seduction, and then inexplicably, Boney James Funky Christmas. It’ll getcha in the mood. (1721 W. Canal St., PaysBig.com)

Also: Klassik with ShowYouSuck, Auggie the 9th, Sean Anonymous and Hurt Everybody at Mad Planet, 9 p.m. ($7) – (533 E. Center St, Mad-Planet.net)

And: Trapdoor Social with The Directionals and Death of the Author at Stonefly Brewery, 8 p.m. – (735 E. Center St., StoneflyBrewery.com)

And: Jazz in the Park featuring Wicked Knee at Cathedral Square Park, 6 p.m. (FREE) – (825 N. Jefferson St., http://www.easttown.com/events/jazz-in-the-park)

And: The Cactus Bros at Tonic Tavern, 8 p.m. (FREE) – (2335 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., TonicTavern.com)

Friday, August 8: Body Futures (album release) with The Rutebega and Like Like The The The Death at Cactus Club, 10 p.m. (2496 S. Wentworth Ave., CactusClubMilwaukee.com)

Also: 311 with DJ Trichrome at Wisconsin State Fair Park, 8 p.m. ($25-$35) – (640 S. 84th St.,  WIStateFair.com)

And: The Cavewives at Tonic Tavern, 8 p.m. (FREE) – (2335 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., TonicTavern.com)

Saturday, August 9: Lady Antebellum with Kristian Bush at Wisconsin State Fair Park, 8 p.m. ($49-$59)

Pop country behemoth Lady Antebellum is prepping the release for her forthcoming album, the self-described “up-tempo” 747, but the band has already delivered a single that will soundtrack every college girl’s pre-game party for the next decade. “Bartender” begins with the heartbroken narrator at home on a weekend night, and eventually leads to her getting super hammered with friends (“Go until they cut me off”) and gently letting down the guys that dance with them. (640 S. 84th St., WIStateFair.com) 

Also: Hello Death with Adelyn Rose and Softly Dear at Club Garibaldi, 8 p.m. – (2501 S. Superior St., ClubGaribaldis.com)

And: Filter Free Rodeo with The Directionals, Awkward Terrible and Blind Tarzan at Cactus Club, 9 p.m. – (2496 S. Wentworth Ave., CactusClubMilwaukee.com)

And: Smokey Robinson at the Riverside Theater, 6:30 p.m. ($55-$75) – (116 W. Wisconsin Ave., PabstTheater.org) 

And: Austin Mahone with VAMPS, Fifth Harmony and Shawn Mendes at The Rave, 7 p.m. ($38-$201) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave., TheRave.com)

And: Cecilio Negron Jr. at Tonic Tavern, 8 p.m. (FREE) – (2335 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., TonicTavern.com)

Sunday, August 10: Future Islands with Operators at Turner Hall Ballroom, 7 p.m. ($15)

As ratings decline for late night talk shows, there’s greater pressure to create viral moments over the airwaves that gain traction on social media the following day. Whereas a network television spot in the past could break a band, those lesser known groups now need to engage the audience better and create a lasting moment. As Tyler, the Creator cemented his position in pop culture by jumping atop Jimmy Fallon’s shoulders after an inspired performance, Future Islands’ singer Samuel T. Herring established his band’s moment with some exaggerated dance moves. The video blew up on the Internet the next day—Letterman even referenced the dancing in a monologue—and now it’s almost impossible to get the highly infectious, driving synth-pop of “Seasons (Waiting on You)” out of my head. (1032 N. Fourth St., PabstTheater.org) 

Also: The Championship and Space Raft at Tonic Tavern, 8 p.m. (FREE) – (2335 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., TonicTavern.com)

And: Alabama at Wisconsin State Fair Park, 6 p.m. ($29-$39) – (640 S. 84th St., WIStateFair.com) 

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