As musicians grapple with the past few months that proved to be a pause on their regular scheduled programming, the silence has given them a chance to redefine what it means to interact, or in this case, perform live. Gathering in a sweaty music venue and watching someone perform live is a hard thing to imagine right now. With numbers across the country still going up as thousands of students return to college campuses, a slight return to normalcy serves as a dream. Local music venues are struggling to hold on as their main sources of income are at a halt. Patrons are encouraged to donate and support them in whatever way they can.
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A star-studded lineup of artists took the stage at the Alliant Energy Center this past Friday night. Headlined by The Chainsmokers, The World War Joy Tour included acts from Australian pop-rock band 5 Seconds of Summer and Canadian native, Lennon Stella.
The Chainsmokers with 5 Seconds of Summer at the Alliant Energy Center – 11/9
Kenosha, Wisconsin’s own Alexander Kain — a rising hip-hop musician and entertainer — performed at this years Freakfest, opening for Lil Yachty at the Capitol Square Stage. He caught up with The Daily Cardinal’s Megan Girod and discussed his experience performing that night, as well as his current projects.
Big Thief took the stage for their second time in Madison this past Saturday at the Sylvee. Their new album Two Hands is their second to come out this year, following U.F.O.F., which dropped in early May.
The first-time feeling compares to no other. It is handled with care. Though it shows in just about every small detail around you, I find myself lost at the vibration hovering, cutting corners and seeping between Grant Park.
Superorganism is a well-oiled machine (assuming in this metaphor that machines are coalitions of incredibly theatrical, talented and artistic people and “well-oiled” refers to their well-put-togetherness and not to the amount of oil on them). The quirky octet displayed their musicianship with a multi-faceted and highly entertaining show at the Majestic on May 1.
Throughout music history, few bands and acts have been able maintain a level of consistent success as well as Breaking Benjamin has. Enduring its own share of struggles, founder/lead vocalist Ben Burnley has reorganized, assembling a new incarnation of the legendary hard rock group. Now a five-piece well-oiled machine, many fans, critics and even Burnley himself feel the band is heavier and more complete than in the past.
Rico Nasty is an American rapper whose shows are a performance of ferocity that demand attention and participation. She can be many things on stage: caustic, forceful, witty and empathetic. She engages the audience with calls to a mosh pit and embraces star-struck fans. Rico Nasty has disarmingly powerful stage presence, and her performance is a celebration of her journey toward self-confidence.
Hippie Sabotage, the EDM duo consisting of brothers Kevin and Jeff Saurer, infected the Sylvee last Wednesday with one killer jam sesh.
As I rushed to the Rainbow Kitten Surprise concert at the Sylvee this past Monday night, I had high expectations after their gig at Majestic Theatre last year, which was full of head-bang worthy rock-inspired renditions of their classics and an intimate feel despite Sam Melo’s overwhelmingly energetic stage presence.
On Thursday, Jan. 31, Madison was on the back end of the worst week of cold weather that many of us have ever seen. Residents were told to stay inside, turn up the heat and not leave unless it was necessary. Surely, no one would be in the mood to celebrate just yet with temperatures well below zero and snow falling steadily, right? Well, Madison’s music and concert scene didn’t seem phased one bit.
Eventually, I wonder, if rapper Noname will change her stage name to just Name, something that hints at the name she’s made for herself in the last few years of her career.
Stores boast crazy sales like “Buy three, get one free!” Concerts do the same thing, in a way, giving audiences an opener along with the headliner they’re paying to see. The joint show of indie-folk singer-songwriters Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus was the best three-for-one deal though, all three of them headlining acts worth every cent and tear.
“We’re more similar than we are different, but the differences we do have are beautiful.”
The Majestic Theatre was inflated with badass, indie rock fans of all capacities this past Thursday to relish in the positive energy that is Joywave and Sir Sly.
What do you get when you combine powerhouse lead vocals, a smooth jazz vibe and a rock n’ roll beat? Two hours of unadulterated joy produced by the multi-genre, Boston-found band Lake Street Dive.
The Sylvee was washed with blue light and smoke as it came alive with the dynamic rhythms of Lauv last Friday night. His magnetic stage presence combined with his obvious love for performing electrified the theater and gave the audience a show filled with fast-paced moments, slow ballads and occasional times of laughter.
I will begin this review with a disclaimer: I’d never listened to Greta Van Fleet before I heard this album. I was going into it with an open mind — music-savvy friends had shown me snippets of singles the band had released over the past couple years, and I wasn’t interested in knowing them any better. I came upon Anthem of the Peaceful Army hoping to have my mind changed.
Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon left the Sylvee stage following their fundraising performance Saturday saying “On, Wisconsin” in a hinting tone, like what he actually wanted to say was “you better get out and vote, Wisconsin.”