Shows this week include Parquet Courts, Jon Mueller, Brett Newski, DJ events celebrating Dr. Dre and David Bowie, and Bone Thugs-N-Harmony with Klassik. Plus: stream the new Eaux Claires mixtape.
While the local thermostat still reads below freezing, the music calendar certainly warms up this unusually busy week with a solid slate of shows and other music-themed events. There are plenty of celebrations to take your mind off the brutally cold weather, if only for a few days.
Things kick off on Monday with the acerbic four-piece Parquet Courts at Turner Hall Ballroom (1032 N. 4th St). Fresh off the Brooklyn art-punks’ most challenging effort, the 9-song, instrumental EP Monastic Living, the band returned to form with the first single, “Dust,” from upcoming full-length Human Performance, which encapsulates the persisting social anxiety that creeps into most of Parquet Courts’ heady work. Expect loads of new cuts and maybe we’ll be lucky enough to hear surprise Light Up Gold hit “Stoned and Starving.” Love of Everything opens.
On Wednesday night, ‘90s hip-hop group Bone Thugs-N-Harmony rolls through Milwaukee and makes a pit stop at Turner Hall Ballroom, as well. The Cleveland-based collective proved that good hip hop wasn’t only birthed on the coasts and that the Midwest could be firm contributors. The group did receive some help from Compton rapper and former N.W.A. member Eazy E, who paid for bus tickets to L.A. in order for the band to sign to Ruthless Records. Eazy-E’s subsequent death became the subject of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony’s Grammy winning song, “Tha Crossroads” in 1996.
Local emcee Klassik, who’s fresh off his best album to date, opens the show.
The latest project from profound percussionist Jon Mueller (of Pele, Volcano Choir and Death Blues) presents the drummer’s musical response to current Haggerty Museum of Art, 530 N. 13th St., exhibit Carrie Schneider: Reading Women. The exhibit features the work of contemporary artist and photographer Schneider, who captured and filmed 100 women reading female-written texts in their homes. Mueller’s score, entitled “Communion,” will attempt to find a thread between listener and viewer through his mesmerizing rhythms. It’s a truly a one of a kind performance that shouldn’t be missed. The show starts at 6 p.m. and there is no cover charge.
If you’re not feeling live music right now, there are two opportunities to catch tribute DJ sets celebrating seminal artists this week. First up is Dre Day at Company Brewing, 735 E. Center St., on Saturday held in honor of Dr. Dre’s 51st birthday. DJs Madhatter and Bizzon will spin classic tracks from the So-Cal rapper and producer. A couple blocks away Mad Planet, 533 E. Center St., hosts a David Bowie dance party with DJs Frank Straka and Megan Minya.
Finally on Saturday, noted folk music wanderer Brett Newski returns to Milwaukee for an EP release show at Cactus Club, 2496 S. Wentworth Ave. The singer-songwriter’s Facebook page invokes massive vacation-envy, as Newski travels from country-to-country barely trying to scrape by a living on the run. The more interesting road stories often make their way onto his spirited songs.
Stream of the Week
In announcing the second annual Eaux Claires festival, organizers mailed a cassette to early bird ticket buyers that included previously unreleased recordings from some of the musicians playing the two-day event in August. Because everything eventually makes its way to the internet, you can listen to the full mixtape on Soundcloud.
This Week in Live Music
Monday, February 15: Parquet Courts with Love of Everything at Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m. ($15) – (1032 N. 4th St., PabstTheater.org)
Tuesday, February 16: Absolutely with Chung Antique and The Rutabega at Lucky Cat, 7 p.m. – (2541 N. Bremen St.)
Wednesday, February 17: Bone Thugs-N-Harmony with Klassik at Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m. ($29.50 advance; $34.50 door) – (1032 N. 4th St., PabstTheater.org)
Thursday, February 18: Jon Mueller – “Communion” at Haggerty Museum of Art, 6 p.m. (FREE) – (530 N. 13th St.)
Also: Naughty By Nature with The Rusty P’s at The Rave, 8 p.m. ($23) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave., TheRave.com)
Also: MKE Unplugged Presents: Soul Low with Hello Death at Helene Zelazo Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 p.m. (FREE) – (2419 E. Kenwood Blvd.)
Friday, February 19: Cloud Cult at Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m. ($18) – (1032 N. 4th St., PabstTheater.org)
Also: Christopher Gilbert Presents: ARTdentity Pt2 “A Rise For The Youth” at Company Brewing, 10:30 p.m. – (735 E. Center St., CompanyBrewery.com)
And: The Bang Bang with Faux Fiction, The Dirty Creeps and Sure Fire Groove at Linneman’s Riverwest Inn, 9 p.m. ($5) – (1001 E. Locust St., Linnemans.com)
And: Doby Watson with Myles Coyne, Caley Conway and Atom Lax at Riverwest Public House, 9 p.m. ($5) – (815 E. Locust St., RiverwestPublicHouse.WordPress.com)
Saturday, February 20: Lizzo with DJ Sophia Eris at Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m. ($15) – (1032 N. 4th St., PabstTheater.org)
Also: Brett Newski (EP release) with Zach Pietrini Band and Detlef Schremph at Cactus Club, 9 p.m. ($7 advance; $10) – (2496 S. Wentworth Ave., CactusClubMilwaukee.com)
And: Tapebenders with Antler House, Fivy and Moleskin Productions at Linneman’s Riverwest Inn, 9 p.m. ($5) – (1001 E. Locust St., Linnemans.com)
And: Skizzy Mars with Kool John and P-Lo at The Rave, 8 p.m. ($18) – (2401 W. Wisconsin Ave., TheRave.com)
Sunday, February 21: Sane Crew Video Release with WC Tank, Low Cut Connie and Ladders at Company Brewing, 9:30 p.m. ($8) – (735 E. Center St., CompanyBrewery.com)