Fall Music Season is Here

While the music festivals and weekend events dwindle, better club shows pop up during autumn. Here’s a few this week worth checking out.

Even though cooler temps made it seem like the season changed a while ago, this week officially marks the end of summer and the start of fall. The autumnal months bring about many great things, like apple cider, pumpkin pie, Oktoberfest beers…oh, and football. The music calendar ostensibly heats up during fall, as well. Here’s what’s worth checking out this week.

Monday: Fresh off their most ethereal and dreamy record yet, electronic duo Beach House found their comfort zone on 2015’s Depression Cherry and nestled inside that sound. Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally’s time together has never felt forced. On breakout album, 2010’s Teen Dream, the two always seemed to be going at their own pace, when picking things up might have helped find them a wider audience. Beach House will never be party music, per se, but it would make the perfect soundtrack to a slow-motion montage of a party.

Beach House headlines The Pabst Theater with opener Jessica Pratt on Monday, September 21. Doors open at 7 p.m. and tickets cost $24.75.

Wednesday: Calgary four-piece Viet Cong, which includes members of the fleeting noise rock band Women, explores the same dreary post-punk depths Joy Division originally excavated in the late ‘70s. Brutish and unforgiving, the band’s self-titled debut from this January feels inaccessible, but yet at the same time, all-encompassing—like a piece of modern art that’s rigid and unexplainable but nonetheless moving. This show will be this group’s last under the moniker Viet Cong, as they just announced a name change due to numerous complaints.

Viet Cong plays Cactus Club with Greys and Dorth Nakota on Wednesday, September 23 at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10.

Thursday: If changing leaves and wool-knit sweaters just aren’t your thing, then Wavves could be a temporary salve. In lead singer Nathan Williams’ world, summer never ends. The surf-rock man-boy likes having fun and smoking weed. The only thing harshing his buzz is Warner Bros.’ mishandling of the band’s second major label record, V, which is due out October 2.

Wavves headlines The Rave with openers Twin Peaks and Steep Leans at 8 p.m. Tickets are $17.50.

Saturday: Mad Planet has played host to countless memorable shows (Arcade Fire, Sleigh Bells, The Black Lips) and remains the hip, go-to spot for dancing on most weekend nights. This Saturday, the music/dance club celebrates its 25th anniversary with music from three tribute bands: Radio Radio (performing 70s/80s new wave covers), Salford Lads (tackling The Smiths) and Pretend (local band Testa Rosa’s take on The Pretenders). Come to reminisce in more ways than one.

Mad Planet’s 25th Anniversary Party takes place on Saturday, September 26 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $8.

DIY Market

Looking for old, out-of-stock merch from years past? Check out the Punk Rock Rummage Sale held outside R&D Pub, 3040 S. Delaware Ave., from 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. on Saturday. Looking to sell old, out-of-stock merch from years past? Show up at 2 p.m. and set up your own booth, free of charge.

Video of the Week

The debut record, WWYDF, from electro-soul duo Kiings utilizes the best local talent the city has to offer, a wide variety of musical artists that end up providing some solid ground behind the producers’ mesmerizing beats. The pieces fall seamlessly into place on album standout “1984,” which features performances from rappers bliss & alice and WebsterX and folk musician King Courteen. Last week, Kiings premiered a Damien Klaven-directed music video for the song. Like the track itself, the video is both pristine and hypnotizing.

Even More Options

Wednesday, September 23: Reverend Horton Heat with The Adics and The Creepshow at the Miramar Theatre, 8 p.m. ($25-$30) – (2844 N. Oakland Ave., TheMiramarTheatre.com)

Thursday, September 24: OBN III’s with Platinum Boys and Slow Walker at Cactus Club, 8 p.m. ($8) –(2496 S. Wentworth Ave., CactusClubMilwaukee.com)

Also: The Figgs with The Midwest Beat at Linneman’s Riverwest Inn, 8 p.m. ($10) – (1001 E. Locust St., Linnemans.com)

Friday, September 25: Garth Brooks at the BMO Harris Bradley Center, 7 p.m. ($74.98) – (two more shows on Saturday) – (1001 N. 4th St., BradleyCenter.com)

Sunday, September 27: Heartless Bastards plays with Alberta Cross at Turner Hall Ballroom, 7 p.m. ($20) – (1032 N. 4th St., PabstTheater.org)



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.