The upcoming fall semester has one of the sexiest concert calendars in the history of the Madison music scene. We’ve picked out 15 essential shows to add to your student planner. Of course, the list is not exhaustive, but you can find continual live music updates on The Badger Herald website. Rock on!
Since 1998, My Morning Jacket has injected a delectable brand of roots rock into the indie music scene. The band’s frontman, Jim James, recently put out his first full-length solo album, Regions of Light and Sound of God, which mixes more eclectic musical influences than traditional MMJ releases.
The National, Orpheum Theater, Sept. 15, 8 p.m., SOLD OUT
If sounds marinated in sorrow and melancholy get your blood pumping, Brooklyn-based The National is a must-see. Their Orpheum show may be sold out, but keep your eyes peeled on Craigslist for tickets.
A wave of darkness crashed across the shores of contemporary music culture this summer when Savages released its debut album, Silence Yourself. With a sound steeped in post-punk influence, the band members unabashedly rock their pale skin and black clothing during their live shows in the most relevant way since Ian Curtis made sadness cool.
Who knows and who cares about Local Natives? Not a lot of people know because they’re fresh and hip and sexy and indie. But everyone should care, because they’re coming to the Orpheum, and they will woo you with their lush pop-folk stylings.
In the strangest combination since kiwi and milk, Kid Cudi and Tyler, the Creator will headline together at the Alliant Energy Center. While Kid Cudi’s dreamy, synth-fueled sound is an odd pairing with Odd Future member Tyler’s aggressive, horrorcore-esque lyrics, the night is any contemporary hip-hop fan’s wet dream.
Every summer, the Majestic Theater reaffirms its status as being totally freaking awesome with its free concert series, Live on King Street. San Diego band Delta Spirit brings the series to a close this year, with Phox, Hugh Bob and The Hustle and Nick Nice opening.
For years, Immortal Technique and Brother Ali have continued the teachings of such politically-minded rap artists as Chuck D with their topical, aggressive lyricism and hard-hitting yet soulful beats. Both artists are amazing live and will please not only those who appreciate intelligent lyricism, but also those who like funky fresh beats.
Like to party? You do? Well, Andrew W.K. likes to party more than you do. The pop-rocker – whose only album is called I Get Wet - has a Twitter account with constant motivational quotes about the power of positive partying. His life is party. Live it with him. And party on.
Aaron Carter is a little-known pop singer who at one point released an album called Aaron’s Party (Come Get It) that was very unsuccessful, selling only a little more than 3 million copies. He also competed on an unsuccessful reality show called “Dancing with the Stars.” He will be playing in Madison. It will be fun.
The ’60s is alive and well in the beautiful walls of psychedelic noises Tame Impala have pumped into their two studio albums, the latter of which, Lonerism, was one of the most acclaimed releases of 2012. Perfectly complimentary tunes for the colors you see when you are daydreaming or when you are on drugs.
Last March, Animal Collective was scheduled to play the Orpheum, but member Avey Tare came down with a nasty case of strep throat, and the show was cancelled, leaving ticket holders desperate for psychedelic soundscapes and experimental freak folk. Thankfully, the tour has been rescheduled, and AnCo, being the nice guys that they are, are coming back. Sure to be a visual and aural treat.
With two well-received albums behind them, indie blog darlings Unknown Mortal Orchestra are taking their distinct lo-fi psychedelic indie rock on the road. Like weird vibes? Then check this show out.
of Montreal – a consistently reliable source of weirdness – will bring psychedelic indie pop to the Majestic on one of the most psychedelic of holidays: Halloween. Subtitled “A Halloween Costume Ball,” the concert will be the perfect place to party while still wallowing in a post-Freakfest daze.
Several years removed from the summer of chillwave, Toro y Moi is still bringing the good vibes. His newest album, Anything in Return, is a dizzying blend of synths and sexy, hushed vocals courtesy of Chazwick Bundick, whose hair looks like a pineapple. If his killer performance at Revelry is any indication of his current live show, this can’t be missed.
Hipsters unite! Since the beautiful 1990s, Boise-based Built to Spill have released seven albums to rapturous critical acclaim. In November, when the air turns brisk, the apples turn their sweetest and the leaves turn red and fall to the ground, the band will bring their philosophically dense lyrics and heartfelt instrumentation to the Barrymore. Check it out!