CHVRCHES Brings Synth-Pop to the Riverside Theater This Weekend

CHVRCHES, Scallops Hotel and more. Plus this week’s live music calendar.

CHVRCHES praises an unflinching devotion to synth-pop melodies. That steadfast conviction catapulted the Glasgow-based group from internet unknown to indie buzz band seemingly overnight. The credit goes to the undeniable hooks on 2013’s debut album The Bones of What You Believe, which the band self-produced in its basement studio. Opening track “The Mother We Share” would improbably go on to become a staple at both Urban Outfitters and hip night clubs, and the band began to hone its energetic live show on the summer festival circuit.

For its highly-anticipated follow-up, CHVRCHES decided to make the jump to a major label, Virgin EMI, but the band smartly chose to return to its modest beginnings and once again recorded in their home studio. While sophomore albums can be stubborn affairs, in which up-and-comers bristle often against what gained them attention in the first place, CHVRCHES didn’t experience this unnecessary deviation on 2015’s Every Open Eye, which only doubles down on the unstoppable synth-pop melodies.

Every Open Eye doesn’t provide the same thrill as hearing “The Mother We Share” for this first time, but the effort is better-rounded and deeper than its predecessor. That means CHVRCHES comes to the Riverside Theater this Sunday night with a sufficient supply of dance-floor-ready songs. The show promises to be a bouncy, sweaty celebration of sticky-sweet synth-pop.

CHVRCHES plays the Riverside Theater, 116 W. Wisconsin Ave., on Sunday, September 25. Tickets are $27.50 and doors open at 7 p.m.


Scallops Hotel at Landmark Lanes

There are ostensibly never-ending threads to unravel in the new album from milo’s alter-ego Scallops Hotel. Too Much of Life is Mood is a masterpiece in abstract expressionism and asserts the poet/rapper’s status as a capital-A artist. Scallops Hotel headlines the Moon Room at Landmark Lanes, 2220 N Farwell Ave., on Thursday, September 22 with openers Antilia Raid, SB The Moor and S.AL. The show starts at 9 p.m.

Stream of the Week

Coronation, a new three-song live EP from Foreign Goods, marks the first physical release from the funk/jazz/hip-hop/blues/soul hybrid, which has been a growing presence in the Milwaukee music scene over the past year. The cassette captures the collective’s performance from June’s Summer Soulstice festival, a spirited, free-flowing celebration that interweaves musical form and flair. You can purchase a copy here, which also includes a video footage from the performance as a digital download.


This Week in Live Music

Monday, September 19: Margaret Glaspy with Bad Bad Hats at the Back Room at Colectivo Coffee, 7:30 p.m. ($12 advance; $15 door) – (2211 N. Prospect Ave.,

Also: Eisley with Merriment at The Rave, 8 p.m. ($10) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave.,

Tuesday, September 20: Peaches with TT The Artist at Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m. ($22 advance; $25 door) – (1032 N. 4th St.,

Also: Jake Bugg with Syd Arthur at The Pabst Theater, 8 p.m. ($25) – (144 E. Wells St.,

And: Animal Lover with Gauss and Absolutely at Cactus Club, 9 p.m. – (2496 S. Wentworth Ave.,

And: Shawn Mullins with Chuck Cannon at Shank Hall, 8 p.m. ($20) – (1434 N. Farwell Ave.,

Wednesday, September 21: Taking Back Sunday with You Blew It! at Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m. ($32.25) – (1032 N. 4th St.,

Thursday, September 22: Scallops Hotel with Antilia Raid, SB The Moor and S.AL at Landmark Lanes, 9 p.m. – (2220 N Farwell Ave.,

Also: Blitzen Trapper with Kacy & Clayton at the Back Room at Colectivo Coffee, 8 p.m. ($20) – (2211 N. Prospect Ave.,

And: Keith Sweat at Potawatomi’s Northern Lights Theater, 8 p.m. (SOLD OUT) – (1721 W. Canal St.,

And: Sam Llanas at Linneman’s Riverwest Inn, 8 p.m. (FREE) – (1001 E. Locust St.,

And: The Twilight Hours with The Mike Benign Compulsion at Walkers Point Anodyne Coffee, 8 p.m. ($12 advance; $15 door) – (224 W. Bruce St.,

Friday, September 23: Blind Guardian with Grave Digger at the Rave, 8 p.m. ($25) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave.,

Also: Unlooped Presents: Jazzmatazz 414 – Hip Hop to Bebop Supper Club at Company Brewing, 9 p.m. ($10; $5 with dinner reservation) – (735 E. Center St.,

And: Gap Dream with Death Panels and Heat Death at Cactus Club, 9 p.m. – (2496 S. Wentworth Ave.,

And: Sauna Youth at Riverwest Public House, 9 p.m. ($5) – (815 E. Locust St.,

And: Kessel Runner at Landmark Lanes, 9 p.m. – (2220 N Farwell Ave.,

Saturday, September 24: Danny Brown with Maxo Kream, Zeeloper at the Rave, 8 p.m. ($23) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave.,

Tacocat with Dude York and The Pukes at Cactus Club, 9 p.m. ($10) – (2496 S. Wentworth Ave.,

And: Joseph Arthur with Reuben Hollebon at the Back Room at Colectivo Coffee, 8 p.m. ($20) – (2211 N. Prospect Ave.,

And: Thrice with La Dispute, Nothing Nowhere at The Rave, 7:30 p.m. ($21) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave.,

And: Dumpster Doves with Snake Oil and Bam Bam & the Gigolos at Riverwest Public House, 9 p.m. ($5) – (815 E. Locust St.,

Sunday, September 25: CHVRCHES at The Riverside Theater, 8 p.m. ($27.50) – (116 W. Wisconsin Ave.,

Also: Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra at Riverwest Public House (FREE) – (815 E. Locust St.,



Kevin is a freelance writer residing in Milwaukee. He’s contributed to The Shepherd Express, Third Coast Daily, Pop Matters and the sadly now-defunct A.V. Club Milwaukee. He looks forward to forging a deeper connection with the city’s impressive music scene during his gig as a Music Notes blogger. His talents include music criticism, riding a bicycle, drinking tasty beers and a crafty croquet swing. His weaknesses comprise Jean-Claude Van Damme movies, professional wrestling and his ever-growing record collection. He’s in desperate need to find more physical (and hard drive) space for the exceptional albums Milwaukee musicians keep churning out.