Enjoy a compilation of selected tracks by artists playing shows we're excited about in Madison during the week of Sept. 29 - Oct. 6, 2016. For more information on these shows, read on under the Spotify playlist!
Ryley Walker, Thursday, Sept. 29, Frequency, 9 pm: A year’s worth of hard touring in 2015 brought Ryley Walker home to Chicago, where he began the winter recording sessions for Golden Sings That Have Been Sung, his beautifully prismatic new album co-produced by Wilco’s LeRoy Bach. The intimate Frequency should be the perfect venue for full immersion. With Circuit des Yeux.
Porches, Thursday, Sept. 29, High Noon Saloon, 8 pm: Aaron Maine may be dating indie sensation Frankie Cosmos, but listening to the music he makes with Porches, you’d think he’s the loneliest boy in the world. With a melancholic synthpop sound, Porches make music for nights spent wandering under neon signs without anywhere in particular to go. With Japanese Breakfast, Rivergazer.
Ben Folds, Thursday, Sept. 29, Majestic Theatre, 9 pm: Even though Folds’ quirky alt-musical journey eventually expanded to include a band, orchestral compositions, unforgettable work with college a cappella groups and a stint as a judge on The Sing-Off, it’s both poetic and appropriate that his current sold out Madison shows are — you guessed it — just Folds and a piano again. ALSO: Friday, Sept. 30, 9 pm.
Daikaiju vs. Knuckel Drager, Friday, Sept. 30, Willy Street Pub (The Wisco), 8 pm: This twin-bill of surf-influenced volume dealers is hosted by Madison’s own masked action combo, Knuckel Drager, one of the few bands where it actually makes sense when two drummers and two bass players join the wall of guitars on stage. Their opponent is kabuki-masked Daikaiju, whose intense live show inspires equally intense devotion from the group’s fanbase. Too big to be contained within the Wisco’s walls, this show will be played outside if the weather cooperates.
The Wombats, Saturday, Oct. 1, Majestic Theatre, 9 pm: British indie rock trio the Wombats formed in Liverpool in 2003 while the members attended the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts. The band, currently on a U.S. tour, features vocalist/guitarist Matthew Murphy, drummer Dan Haggis and Norwegian-born bassist Tord Øverland-Knudsen. The band launched their third full-length album in 2015, the synth-heavy Glitterbug. With Mona.
Ziggy Marley, Saturday, Oct. 1, Barrymore Theatre, 8 pm: Bob Marley’s son has carried on the family’s reggae legacy for decades, including 15 years fronting the Melody Makers. Now Ziggy Marley is supporting his eponymous sixth solo album. He’s also an activist, children’s book author and entrepreneur, with his own line of organic, GMO-free cooking products.
Every Time I Die, Monday, Oct. 3, Majestic Theatre, 7:30 pm: For just a shade under two decades, Every Time I Die has been at the forefront of modern metal. The Buffalo, New York, quintet has put out seven albums of chugging metalcore jams married with wry, sardonic lyrics — a noteworthy impulse in a genre that often lacks a sense of humor. Their eighth full-length, Low Teens, was released in September, and includes a collaboration with Brendan Urie of Panic! At the Disco. With Old Wounds, Audacity, No Hoax.
Southern Culture on the Skids, Tuesday, Oct. 4, High Noon Saloon, 8 pm: SCOTS + HNS = guaranteed rock ’n’ roll party. The trio of Rick Miller, Mary Huff and Dave Hartman has been making dancers of even the most dedicated “stand stolidly with yer beer” concertgoers for more than three decades, and exploring various greasy corners of American music on their recordings. The current tour showcases boss new album The Electric Pinecones, a return of sorts to a ’60s “country psych garage”-besotted alter ego that SCOTS used while playing parties in the ’80s. With Lou Shields.
Cinderella, Tuesday, Oct. 4, Overture Hall, 7:30 pm: This touring version of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella features hometown girl and Tommy Award winner Tatyana Lubov in the title role. At heart, it’s the same beloved story, but in the 2013 Broadway rewrite, Cinderella is fighting for social justice as well as her own happily ever after. ALSO: Oct. 5-6, 7:30 pm; through Oct. 9.
Beats Antique, Wednesday, Oct. 5, Majestic Theatre, 8:30 pm: Oakland, California-based Beats Antique are touring with their 10th studio album, Shadowbox, and for this show, they’re planning a multimedia extravaganza based on Indonesian shadow puppetry. The group bridges the technological age by merging modern beats with traditional music, especially from the Middle East. They have also dedicated proceeds from their album, Killer Bee, to efforts to address the bee crisis. Expect to see a lot of local bellydancers in attendance, and be sure to stretch your muscles before diving in. With Too Many Zooz, Thrifworks.
Rachael Yamagata, Wednesday, Oct. 5, High Noon Saloon, 8 pm: Rachael Yamagata is your favorite singer’s favorite singer. Since beginning her solo career in 2001 (she previously fronted the Chicago band Bumpus), Yamagata has collaborated with countless other artists, including multiple tracks on classic albums, including Bright Eyes’ Cassadaga and Ryan Adams’ Cold Roses. And Yamagata’s own releases, including this year’s Tightrope Walker, are bluesy, criminally underrated slices of alternative heaven. With Pressing Strings.
Steve ’N’ Seagulls, Wednesday, Oct. 5, The Frequency, 8 pm: Hailed by the band’s own publicist as “a YouTube lark gone horribly, horribly wrong,” the five Finns in Steve ’N’ Seagulls (see what they did there?) play “hillbillified” bluegrass versions of classic cuts by the likes of AC/DC, Guns N’ Roses, Iron Maiden and Metallica. Lark or not, these guys have created a successful shtick that’s surprisingly refreshing.
Dallahan, High Noon Saloon, Thursday, Oct. 6, 7 pm: It’s not at all unusual for Celtic bands to meld traditional Irish and Scottish music into their repertoires. But Hungarian folk songs? Now that’s what you call a Celtic curveball. Jani Lang, Dallahan’s fiddler and co-lead vocalist, is responsible for adding a Transylvanian touch to tunes like “Zold Erebon,” a fast-paced reel off the band’s second album, A Matter of Time. But the ability to serve up gypsy swing is only part of the reason why the award nominations keep piling up in their native Scotland; if you’re looking for first-rate Celtic trad, come on and get your jjg on. With Open the Door for Three.
Wilder Deitz Group, Thursday, Oct. 6, Stoughton Opera House, 7:30 pm: Twenty-three-year-old pianist Deitz is an old jazz soul making very new and improvisational music. Deitz studied under UW-Madison bass virtuoso Richard Davis and has a new album of energetic, original compositions called Child’s Play. Deitz is a generous artist on and off the stage. In addition to launching his own career, Deitz is the director of Madison East’s Black Music Ensemble.
You can find the entire rundown of this week's Isthmus Picks here.