This Week in Milwaukee: Jan. 26 - Feb. 1, 2017
Tom Segura @ The Pabst Theater, 7 p.m.
Los Angeles comedian Tom Segura was a contestant on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing,” but he owes much of his following to the decidedly non-network-TV-friendly material he shares on his podcast, “Your Mom’s House,” which he co-hosts with his wife Christina Pazsitzky. Each show provides a (sometimes graphic) glimpse into their domestic life. Last year saw the debut of Segura’s Netflix special Mostly Stories, which includes some lessons in male anatomy and a story about Mike Tyson.
Louis the Child @ Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m.
Some electronic acts aim for the clubs; others target the charts. The awkwardly christened Chicago duo Louis the Child take the latter approach, mining the mass-appeal sounds of Top 40 pop. In 2015, they earned an influential fan in Taylor Swift, who waxed enthusiastically about their feel-good single, “It’s Strange.” In Chainsmokers fashion, they’ve done some of their best work in collaboration with other artists (usually women), including their 2016 singles “Weekend” with Icona Pop and “Fire” with a singer named Evalyn.
@ Comedy Café, 7:30 p.m.
Don’t let his current Los Angeles address mislead you. Quinn Dahle’s comedy is very much grounded in the interests and attitudes of middle America. The stand-up comedian lived in Minnesota, Colorado and Arizona before moving to L.A., and his observational comedy draws heavily from those experiences. Dahle has made appearances on shows including “The Tonight Show,” “Lopez Tonight” and “Last Call with Carson Daly,” and, like so many of the ’80s and ’90s comics that inspired him, he’s hoping to make his breakthrough with his own sitcom based on his life. He’ll do multiple shows with comedians Christian Duguay and William Krolowitz this weekend at the Comedy Café. (Through Saturday, Jan. 28).
Saturday, Jan. 28
MELT w/ Luxi, Construct, Piñata, Fortune and The Demix @ Quarter’s Rock ’N Roll Palace, 10 p.m.
The Milwaukee experimental electronic music series MELT has a lot more company than it used to have these days, with new electronic music showcase shows springing up nearly every month. But for music fans looking for an overview of some of the less-visible corners of Milwaukee’s thriving electronic music scene, these shows are still one of the best places to start. This latest installment is headlined by one of the scene’s rising stars, Luxi, an electro-pop producer who this month released her most vibrant album yet, the drum-and-bass-tinged Geometric Universe.
Pablove 8 @ Turner Hall Ballroom, 7 p.m.
Milwaukee’s Jeff Castelaz left the city to carve out a career in the music industry in Los Angeles, where he co-founded Dangerbird Records and went on to become the president of Elektra Records. He’s kept close ties to the city, though. Each year, he returns to put on the annual Pablove Benefit Concert to raise funds for pediatric cancer treatment and research for his Pablove Foundation, which he created to honor his late son, Pablo. Each year’s show features a unique lineup of Milwaukee musicians, and this year’s is no different. It features Goran of The Gufs, Willy Porter, Christopher Porterfield of Field Report and Brett Newski, as well as a performer from beyond the Milwaukee music scene: KT Tunstall, the Scottish rock singer-songwriter who scored two big international hits in the ’00s, “Black Horse and the Cherry Tree” and “Suddenly I See”—which Hillary Clinton used as the campaign song for her first presidential bid.
Jim Jefferies @ The Riverside Theater, 8 p.m.
Angry and brash but with a genuine sense of humility, Australian stand-up Jim Jefferies made a name for himself in England, where he was dubbed “Britain’s most offensive stand-up comic” by Q Magazine. Obscenities spew from the Aussie’s mouth as he uses virtually any controversial topic as ammunition against social decency, chivalry and any other moral philosophy he can line up in the crosshairs of his vulgarity. Jefferies’ 2009 HBO special, I Swear to God, proved to be his breakout; he’s since followed it up with a series of comedy specials (most recently Freedumb for Netflix) and the FX series “Legit,” a loosely autobiographical show that finds the comedian living with his alcoholic roommate Steve and Steve’s younger brother Billy, who suffers from advanced muscular dystrophy. Though it only ran for two seasons, the show won praise for its considerate, if unflinching, depiction of life for the disabled.
Wednesday, Feb. 1
Drive-By Truckers @ Turner Hall Ballroom, 8 p.m.
True to their name, Drive-By Truckers never stay in one place too long. The Athens, Ga., rockers followed up 2008’s revelatory Brighter Than Creation’s Dark, a stripped-down and largely acoustic album recorded after guitarist Jason Isbell left the band, with 2010’s The Big To-Do, one of the group’s most rocking albums; a disc that owes particular debt to the roots rock of Tom Petty. The following year’s Go-Go Boots was much more acoustic and stripped down, and though it felt a bit tossed-off compared to the two great records it followed, even on a lesser Drive-By Truckers album the bittersweet songwriting of Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley offered plenty to love. Cooley takes an even bigger role on the group’s new English Oceans, writing a full six songs and for the first time singing lead on one of Hood’s songs. Just ahead of the election, last year’s protest-minded American Band featured a nearly 50/50 songwriting split between the two.
Phox w/ Cuddle Magic @ The Pabst Theater, 8 p.m.
Few Wisconsin bands have made bigger waves in recent years than the Madison-area indie-pop ensemble Phox, and it’s easy to see why. The band has an invitingly unpretentious sound that finds a midpoint between the stylized folk of Bon Iver and the uplifting soul of Fitz and the Tantrums. It’s a compelling combination, and it’s perfectly packaged by singer Monica Martin, whose soft, smoky voice soars above the banjo and the triumphant percussion. Recorded at Justin Vernon’s April Base studio in Eau Claire, the group’s self-titled album featured some of the smartest arrangements of any 2014 folk-pop release. The band says they’ve been at work on their sophomore album, though it’s unclear when that record might finally get a name or release date.