When we made a spring music calendar at the beginning of the semester, we had no idea that so many excellent acts would be announced as the first few weeks of school dragged on. Spring break is over. So are midterms. We’re on the downhill now; enjoy the shows the Madison music scene has left to offer.
It’s gonna be warm soon, folks. Real Estate is a band that emanates warmth, so it just wouldn’t be right to miss out on the band’s Madison stop. Hot off its critically-acclaimed third album, Real Estate shows no signs of switching up its aesthetic. But when it feels this good, does it really matter?
Madison has never been thought of as a hip-hop haven. It lies comfortably between the East and West Coasts and the dirty South. But that’s what makes the Madison hip-hop scene so great: it’s full of hidden gems. This first-ever festival stars Lord of the Fly, Dada x Oppi, Flame the Ruler and CRASHprez, among others. Pick up tickets in advance at the Vilas Hall box office.
When blond Swedish men put on nice clothes and fuse the genres of hip-hop and jazz, the results are nothing short of extraordinary — it’s Movits! The band, which last stopped by Madison in 2012 for an energetic show at the Terrace, is a delightful live act, injecting its shows with humor and Scandinavian charm.
In a hip-hop world dominated by men, Dessa stands as one of the strongest female voices currently working. A self-proclaimed “china doll in the bullpen,” she flows effortlessly from aggressive rapping to fragile singing, spanning every cadence in between. She’s not only the queen of the Twin Cities, she’s the queen of the Midwest.
Avey Tare is a weirdo. As the frontman of one of indie rock’s most psychedelic bands, Animal Collective, Tare is no stranger to weird sounds. His latest project, Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks, sees him working with Angel Deradoorian and Jeremy Hyman and showing no hesitance to continue his journey into the lush haze of psychedelica.
Danny Brown is one of hip-hop’s finest eccentrics. Listening to his music is like taking 60 mg of Adderall, chasing it with some molly, then delving into a steamy bout of cunnlingus for several hours. He’s like no other rapper out there, and this uniqueness translates to his bass-heavy live shows.
The Uncluded teams rapper Aesop Rock and Kimya Dawson (you know her from the “Juno” soundtrack) in an strange combination that sounds and tastes absolutely delicious. Dawson’s cutesy vocals and acoustic guitar blend with Aesop Rock’s booming voice to create a sound that’s anything but stilted. It’s lovely.
If you’re in your 20s and at all caught up in the indie music scene, someday you’ll hear a Cloud Nothings track, probably one from Attack On Memory, and you’ll reminisce on your college days when you drank beer with reckless abandon and amplified your angst with aggressive post-hardcore tunes.
Queen of alt-country Neko Case just released her sixth studio album, The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You, and it’s the latest in a string of critically-acclaimed albums. She can do little wrong. Chances are she’ll do little wrong on the Orpheum stage come May.