Matt Wild
Rock Roundup

It’s Time to Get All Messed Up (Again)

Prepare yourselves for Facebook: The Band.

By - Feb 10th, 2014 10:11 am
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How ‘bout Saturday’s Mitten Fest, folks? The snow! The brandy! The lines! The oft-shirtless bands! The lines! Yes, Burnhearts’ annual outdoor winter block party was everything we hoped it would be (did we mention the lines?), leaving us satisfied, more than a little chilled, and more than a little sloshed. And apparently we weren’t alone: save for one particular blowout, Milwaukee music seems to be taking it easy this week. Happily, there’s just enough going on to justify leaving the house in this cold, post-Mitten-Fest world we now call home.

Thursday, February 13
Rio Turbo at Riverwest Public House

A lot of bands try to pull off the semi-ironic, sexed-up sleaze ball routine, but none do it better in Milwaukee than Rio Turbo. The chemical-dependent brainchild of Joseph Peterson, Rio Turbo is the kind of dance-happy electro-trash outfit that can play songs with titles like “Liquor And Speed” (from 2013’s Ish Ish) and “Brown Eyed World” (from 2013’s Kiss FM) and get away with it. Come for the frenzied beats, stay for the nominally clothed dance squad (The Turbettes) and the opening bands (Soul Low, Lauryl Sulfate, xxxprsnxxx).

Friday, February 14 – Saturday, February 15
All Messed Up IV-Ever at Linneman’s

Now in its fourth year, All Messed Up is a glorious, weekend-long clusterfuck that truly lives up to its name. Here’s the deal: 64 Milwaukee musicians (most of them from the punk, hardcore, and garage-rock neck of the woods) toss their names in a hat; 16 bands of four people are picked at random; the brand-new groups are given roughly two months to write a handful of songs before performing live; chaos ensues. Aside from the music, the highlight of All Messed Up is marveling at the list of ridiculous band names that have been cooked up for the event. For this year’s “IV-Ever” installment, be on the lookout for Handjob Intervention, Facebook: The Band, Carpet City (Sponsored By Carpet City), and Four People With No Idea What The Fuck Their Band Is Called.

Saturday, February 15
Direct Hit! at Riverwest Public House

A few weeks ago, we told you about a pair of benefit shows for Milwaukee punk band Direct Hit! The group had its van and equipment stolen last year in Detroit (because of course Detroit), and had lost additional equipment earlier in the year to a fire. Because Milwaukee is cool like that, the benefit shows were a success, and the band is paying back its generous fans this weekend with a free show at the Riverwest Public House. Galactic Cannibal and Population Control will be along for the thank-you ride.

Saturday, February 15
Brave Baby at Frank’s Power Plant

Charlestown, South Carolina quintet Brave Baby plays the kind of shimmering, widescreen indie rock that bands like Arcade Fire and The Killers used to play before they went through their world-music-disco-things or whatever. That might not make for an entirely original sound, but Brave Baby does it better than most, as evidenced by its lovely 2013 album Forty Bells. Seeing a band with a stadium-ready sound up close and personal in the dingy intimacy of Frank’s should be a trip, and an opportunity to see the federally mandated weekly appearance of openers Myles Coyne And The Rusty Nickel Band should never be missed.

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