The Loft at the Goodman Community Center on Waubesa Street is an incubator for Dane County's high school bands. Last month, Verona's Modern Mod proved that some teenagers still prefer alt-rock to rap-pop. The coed five-piece group won the Loft's Battle of the Bands competition. That's earned them the right to perform at the dirt-bike racing showcase ArenaCross at the Alliant Energy Center this Saturday, Nov. 12. You can hear their grungy riffs and the commanding vocals of lead singer Corrine McKnight at the Track Party beginning at 5 p.m.
The Nod were a happy-go-lucky UW-Madison party band tailor-made for keggers before they graduated and broke up last July. Since then, frontman Brett Newski has become a serious traveling musician. He's currently residing in Saigon, Vietnam, where he says he's trying to "worm my way into strange venues and play for people who have never seen rock 'n' roll music before." He's recording songs along the way and making a new solo album titled In Between Exits. He'll be returning to Madison for a CD-release show at Mickey's Tavern on Dec. 16.
In the early 1990s, Marques Bovre & the Evil Twins were arguably Madison's most popular band. They tempered their heartland rock with plenty of good humor, including a killer cover of "867-5309" and their gender-bending set-ender, "I Like Gyrls Who Like Gyrls." This fall, Bovre has faced serious medical challenges. He's undergone surgery to remove a cancerous brain tumor and continues to receive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Local musicians are planning a benefit show for Bovre on Dec. 11 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the High Noon Saloon. Regional artists including the Gomers, Paul Cebar, Honor Among Thieves, Jentri Colello, Josh Harty and Jim Schwall will perform some of Bovre's greatest songs. The Evil Twins' original lineup, including lead guitarist Linus, will also reunite for the show.