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Best rock group, hip-hop artist and more

Some artists just seem more dedicated than others. Though she’s barely out of high school, Brookfield native Nora Collins has gigged relentlessly over the last three years, averaging about 200 performances a year, charming audiences in any venue that’ll have her with her personal songs...

Best movie theater, art museum and more

 Located in the heart of its neighborhood on the South Side, the Walker’s Point Center for the Arts is truly about furthering local culture. For more than 25 years, WPCA has focused on promoting local artists’ work, helping to educate young people and embracing multicultural visual and...

Most trusted politician, favorite landmark and more

 Personal injury lawyer Michael Hupy (Hupy and Abraham) doesn’t ride, but he has fought for protections for bikers since the ’80s, when he realized that “bikers had no good lawyers.” They do now. In addition to his legal advocacy, Hupy’s influential “Watch for Motorcycles” campaign...

Best breakfast, lunch, dinner and everything in between

 Injera, a large, spongy flatbread with a slightly tart flavor, adds to the unique experience of dining at an Ethiopian restaurant. All entrées are served on top of injera, and it is also your dining utensil—simply tear off a piece and...

Best bar, dance club and more

 If you are living on a fixed income or just appreciate a good deal, visit Mulligans Irish Pub & Grill. With two daily happy hours from 2-6 p.m. and 10 p.m. to midnight...
Last year, the theme for our annual Shepherd Express City Guide was Hidden Treasures of Milwaukee. Writing and researching was a delightful experience and our only frustration was the number of treasures—those less familiar...
 The food of Ethiopia can be fiery. Alem offers a gentler version, though their hot pepper sauce still has richness and depth of flavor. Try the doro wot, chicken with...

Beer, Cheese and Sausage Fest Not To Be Missed!

Craving a tasty new brew? Savory cheese? Delicious sausage? Then join the Shepherd Express on Saturday, April 27, for our first annual Stein & Dine beer, cheese and sausage festival at Milwaukee’s State Fair Expo Center...

Bars that make their own liqueurs

With their multi-ingredient makeup and recent popular resurgence, cocktails fit the bill for drinkers looking for something unique. Over the past few years, the craft cocktail movement has slowly been carving out a niche...
 Tastes in margaritas vary greatly. Some prefer tall bowl-like glasses and frozen fruit flavors, while others stick with the basics and want fresh lime juice, ice and tequila in a tumbler. Whichever type is your favorite, everyone can...
Sometimes in the city known for beer, wine aficionados may feel a little left out. But when you look at Milwaukee’s nightlife, you will see plenty of places to enjoy a glass (or bottle) of vino. Some have been around for a while...
"Honestly, I'm not a big drinker," says the British-born director who is lighting up the Rep, "especially now with a 17-month-old girl at home, but I'm partial every now and then to a finely crafted cocktail.” Where better to go than this wonderfully camp retro bar? “It serves up the best-made...

2013 Fall Arts Guide

Visit the Allis for an exhibit unveiling the immense history within the museum’s walls. As a wealthy industrialist at the turn of the 20th century, Charles Allis was uniquely suited to engage his passion for art collection, and many of his treasures remain in the mansion, including works by...
 Latino Arts’ winter gallery exhibit brightens the Wisconsin winter with the handmade pottery of Luz Angela Crawford. Born in Columbia and currently based in Texas, the artist draws from the ancient pottery designs...

2013 Summer Guide

 Take advantage of the season and enjoy the food at these lakefront establishments. Some are only open in summer and offer foods meant to be eaten outside. Others...

2013 Summer Guide

 If the weather chooses not to cooperate with your beach plans, visit one of the lakefront's indoor venues...

2013 Summer Guide

 Milwaukee County is known for great parks, which consistently rank among the top 20 park systems in the nation. In addition, several communities in the area operate their own parks...

2013 Summer Guide

 Whether or not you own a boat, getting out on the water is one of the best ways to experience the beauty of Lake Michigan. Touring, fishing and taking in the lake air...

2013 Summer Guide

 An event dedicated to craft beer at which local, national and international brewers offer samples. Live music and delectable food pairings make this a must for the beer enthusiast....

Saturday, June 29 @ Marcus Amphitheater, 7:30 p.m.

 If a March performance in Madison is any indication, the kind of fired-up show this trio of country hunks puts on is tailor made for a hot Summerfest evening...

Saturday, June 29 @ Miller Lite Oasis, 10 p.m.

 Over the years, the original Miller High Life Jazz Oasis morphed into the Miller Lite Oasis, making it possible for a breakout rock band like Imagine Dragons to bring its...

Saturday, June 29 @ Harley-Davidson Roadhouse, 5 p.m.

 Bucking against the mysticism of their indie-rock contemporaries, Yeasayer often talks openly in interviews about the influences infused into the Brooklyn group's songs. Although they borrow from African polyrhythms, gospel...

Sunday, June 30 @ Marcus Amphitheater, 7:30 p.m.

 There’s a lot of discussion as to what rapper Pitbull is saying when he repeatedly belts out “dah-ley.” In monolingual America, it sounds like a classy Hepburn “darling,” but...

Sunday, June 30 @ U.S. Cellular Connection Stage, 10 p.m.

 The tastemakers of the Internet era can make a band overnight, as Long Beach, Calif.-based Cold War Kids learned in 2006, when the online chatter surrounding a...

Tuesday, July 2 @ Marcus Amphitheater, 7:30 p.m.

 The oldest band on a three-act nostalgia tour, the New Kids may be pushing the lexical boundaries of their 30-year-old name. But the same things that make it easy to poke...

Tuesday, July 2 @ U.S. Cellular Connection Stage, 10 p.m.

 It’s ironic that AWOLNATION plays Summerfest on July 2, the same night that Styx will be headlining the BMO Harris Pavilion at the other end of the festival grounds, given how much debt the Los Angeles electronic-rock band owes those prog pioneers. AWOLNATION paid overt homage to Styx’s anthem “Come Sail” away on their breakthrough hit “Sail,” and proudly share that band’s more...

Tuesday, July 2 @ BMO Harris Pavilion, 8 p.m.

 Chicago prog-rockers Styx weren’t always known by the same name as the mythical river that separates Earth from the Underworld. Twin brothers Chuck and John Panozzo and neighbor Dennis DeYoung originally formed The...

Wednesday, July 3 @ Marcus Amphitheater, 7:30 p.m.

 Considering the Marcus Amphitheater’s already star-studded country lineup this year, the addition of stud Luke Bryan and two highly regarded up-and-coming acts should be enough to keep the cowboy-hat crowd grinning al...

Thursday, Aug. 1 @ 7:30 p.m.

Fans of Heart may not know that the Seattle-based band didn’t always include sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson, who have come to define the sextet’s distinctive sound. The band began in Bothell, Wash., as The Army, changing...

Saturday, Aug. 3 @ 8 p.m.

  Gary Allan’s 17 years as a fixture of the Nashville hit machine are unique in that—unlike many other country radio regulars—he has very few experiences by which he should be professionally ashamed or embarrassed. The Allan who...

Sunday, Aug. 4 @ 7 p.m.

 One of the slyest pop groups heard on AM radio in the 1960s, The Turtles slipped the cheeky line “How is the weather?” into their unabashed declaration of love, “Happy Together,” and set the optimistic lyric to an emotionally...

Tuesday, Aug. 6 @ 7:30 p.m.

 Don’t let the fact that Canada’s Theory of a Deadman was the first band to sign with Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger’s 604 Records way back in 2001 deter you from this show. The potent quartet represents one of the finer...

Wednesday, Aug. 7 @ 7:30 p.m.

 Contemporary Christian music has taken many forms since its inception in the late 1960s. One of the most popular formats has become contemporary praise and worship, music previously confined to the charismatic movement but...

Thursday, Aug. 8 @ 7:30 p.m.

 Formed in 1968, the current iteration includes guitarist Steve Howe, bassist Chris Squire and drummer Alan White, all veteran members. Keyboardist Geoff Downes...

Friday, Aug. 9 @ 7 p.m.

 Now 19 and tweeting shirtless pics of himself and recording increasingly adult-minded music, Justin Bieber has outgrown his original niche as a kid pop star. Enter 17-year-old Austin Mahone, a dreamy-eyed, silky-haired pop...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 11:30 AM

 Angela Laughingheart’s knitted sculptures have nothing to do with your grandmother’s pastime or your coziest afghan...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 12:00 PM

 Lois Bielefeld’s photographic series root themselves in genuine curiosity about other people’s lives: what their most private spaces look like, what they eat for lunch, why they choose to carry concealed firearms. In order to make the...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 12:30 PM

In a world full of images as slick and fast as they come, Kala Istvanek has chosen to do something deeply counter-intuitive and potentially resistant. Working from pictures found in magazines or on Pinterest.com, she painstakingly ...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 1:00 PM

 For the past two decades or so, Paul Druecke has concerned himself with resuscitating the kinds of public spaces that are easily neglected. So it seems only natural that about three years ago he began to work with that ultimate...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 2:30 PM

 Foraging in nature—for fossils, mushrooms, lamb’s quarters—is very much a chance procedure, but it depends on the seeker having both the knowledge to recognize what he or she encounters, and an openness to finding the...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 3:00 PM

 What does it mean to be a strong woman? Valorie Schleicher asks and answers this question through a series of ceramic sculptures and color photographs which, though made in recent years, harken back to the essentialist...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 3:30 PM

 Common expectation holds that an artist’s work should fit together seamlessly, or at least not require too much suturing on the part of the viewer. But such assumptions not only limit creativity, they are historically inaccurate...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/1/13 4:00 PM

 What would it mean to be a truly democratic subject? In her search for an answer to this question, Kim Miller has looked far and wide, including to Northern Thailand and to a local theater troupe of disabled actors. She has also...
 Brad Fiore’s sculpture of the international star curator Hans Ulrich Obrist looks from afar to have been executed in the style of a Stephen Balkenhol wooden totem, all rough hand-sawn edges and smartly naïve simplification. But...

60 WRD/MIN ART CRITIC @ INOVA MILWAUKEE,WI 6/2/13 11:00 AM

 Sports teams are not known for their politically correct monikers or mascots. On the contrary, over the past few years controversies have arisen as teams have been petitioned to find more acceptable designations. These typically...

DeWaart conducts the MSO this weekend

 Few composers are popular enough for orchestras to want to schedule concerts devoted to their works. Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873-1943) is one of them. Dismissed as “old fashioned” by the avant-garde composers...

A day trip to Madison (as the weather warms up)

 Milwaukee, I will always crush on you. However, I do have a second love. (Gasp!) Oh, m’dear Madison! You are gorgeous and forward thinking and although I’ve already established some of my favorite...

What our crooked bridges reveal about early Milwaukee

 When Byron Kilbourn first stood on the land west of the Milwaukee River in 1834, he predicted that the plot would one day become the greatest city in the American west.  East of the waterway, Frenchman Solomon Juneau had already established...

Fun places to learn about our city and the world

Some still think of Milwaukee as a two-museum town. While it’s true that the Milwaukee Public Museum and the Milwaukee Art Museum remain the city’s largest institutions of their kind, they have been joined by...
Whether you’re in the mood for burgers or sushi, you can find what you’re hungry for in the Shepherd Express’ City Guide dining guide...

Milwaukee Rep stages David Bar Katz’s ‘The History of Invulnerability’

 “I’ve never related to comics but I love the concept of selective memory,” Director Mark Clements said of The History Invulnerability, a fantasy biography by playwright...

Milwaukee Ballet’s season of premieres

Milwaukee Ballet’s success can be attributed, says Artistic Director Michael Pink, to the fact that “since about 2008 the company has continually invested in the future of the art form.” Indeed, the debt-free...

MSO programs three of the composer's symphonies

 Praising the great symphonies of Ludwig van Beethoven seems as redundant as extolling the significance of the Lincoln Memorial. Whereas the mighty edifice remains forever marooned in stationary glory, Beethoven’s wondrous third, seventh and ninth symphonies—scheduled for...

DRINK 2014

 Kyle Cherek, host of “Wisconsin Foodie” on PBS, knows that good food and good drinks go hand in hand. He believes a skilled bartender can do wonders just like some of the best cooks. “My fiancée tends to follow...

Photographs of ‘A New Life’ at Alfons Gallery

 I confess, and maybe you do the same, to having a keen curiosity about other people’s lives. What are their experiences? Where do they live? “A New Life: Portraits...

Gallery Night and Day at the Marshall Building

  Milwaukee’s quarterly Gallery Night and Day is an open invitation to experience the tremendous array of art and culture the Cream City has to offer. For the first time, the Shepherd Express offers a comprehensive walking tour of its own Third Ward home, the historic Marshall Building...

Villa Terrace’s cabinet of wonders

 A cabinet of curiosities displays a bunch of various collected things, often from the natural world. “Species & Specimens,” on view at the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum, is like walking through one of these cabinets in large form. It is a series of wonder rooms where contemporary artists take...
 Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design’s seniors are about to be set loose into a harsh world. Arts budgets have endured a slashing worthy of a cheap horror film and, generally, the arts seem to be viewed as a pleasant, albeit dispensable, divertissement. But the “MIAD 2014 Senior Exhibition,” on view April 18 through...

Haggerty exhibit sorts through the stuff of life

“Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that’s the stuff life is made of,” so wrote Benjamin Franklin in 1746. Franklin was right about time but three current exhibitions highlight the idea that “stuff of life” in...

Performance and visual art by Jeanine Durning and Kyoung Ae Cho

 Jeanine Durning has been ‘inging’ since 2010. ‘Inging’? Let’s break it down. ‘Ing,’ of course, denotes the English language’s present progressive tense for actions that are present and ongoing. ‘Inging,’ then, would be the present and progressive activity of presently and progressively acting....

See the U.S.A. through DNA

 The paradigms with which human beings understand themselves change over time. Cutting-edge research into prehistoric art suggests our distant progenitors saw themselves as existing in a realm of animal spirits, requiring the intervention of shamans. The ascendency of Christianity promoted the view that human...

New ways of seeing the ordinary at RedLine

 Contrary to its title, “Fatigue” is an energizing show. It suggests the many possibilities RedLine, as a gallery and studio for making art, has to offer. This exhibition...

Handicrafts in Depression-era Milwaukee

 “In like a lion, out like a lamb,” it’s said of March’s mellowing weather. But the proverb could be applied to the 1920s with equal justice. Gatsby and flappers and Louis Armstrong’s Hot Five typify the Roaring Twenties in all their extravagant, socially permissive and artistic glory. But on October 29, 1929—aka Black...

Ceramics on display at Tory Folliard Gallery

 Tory Folliard Gallery celebrates the avant-garde and innovative definition of clay in two exhibitions curated by Chris Berti. Both pay tribute to ceramics being collected or studied by the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts conference that traveled to Milwaukee this spring...

Cheech Marin talks about the comedy duo's past, present and future

After a 15-year run of hit comedy albums and movies, Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong parted on hard terms in the mid-’80s. The duo’s 2008 reunion hasn’t completely erased those old tensions, but...

Dec. 30, 2013

Jim Gaffigan has managed a heft of transcendent and eternally quotable comedy specials, in addition to film and television roles, along with publishing his first book, Dad Is Fat, which he release...

From Stein & Dine to Skylight’s next season

 Who says there’s not much to do in Milwaukee? The gays are bustin’ out with a full calendar of wild events, great shows, swanky celebrations and more. Too fancy-smancy? More of a meat-and-potatoes type? (And, who doesn’t like a good set of meat and potatoes?) Check out Stein & Dine on Saturday, April 26 at...
 A great big smooch on the pooch to everyone who offered kind words about my debut in Shepherd Express. I’m glad you like “Hear Me Out,” and I’ll do my best not to let you down. Thanks!...
 Mother Nature is a bitch! There…I said it. Sure, a woman’s prerogative is to change her mind, but this broad has taken things too far! Knock back a few PMS pills, lady, and bring us the spring we deserve. For God sakes, the other night it was so cold, all four of my nipples were hard...

Ruthie tells all (and answers most of your questions)

 Here she is boys! Here she is world! Here’s…Ruthie! “Who the hell is Ruthie?” Let me tell ya, sugar! I’m a big-boned redhead from Milwaukee’s Southside who is happy to...

Dark comedy at UWM Theatre’s Italian Film Festival

Reality TV is the opiate of the idiots in Reality, a dark Italian comedy featured in this year’s Italian Film Festival. Director Matteo Garrone focuses on Luciano (Aniello Arena), an amiable Neapolitan fishmonger addicted to a reality show called “Grande Fratello” (“Big Brother”), whose Orwellian...

The ‘Dune’ that Never Was

 The coolest movie never made, and probably the most influential, is the subject of the documentary Jodorowsky’s Dune. A decade before David Lynch’s widely derided rendition of the Frank Herbert novel, Latin-American cult...

The Captain and Natasha

 The sequels keep coming in the Marvel Comics universe; the superheroes get little time off between saving the world; and the supervillains—you’ve got to hand it to them—work just as hard as the heroes...

Latin American Film Series opens with Marcelo Machado’s documentary

In 1964, Brazil’s military overthrew their country’s government and The Beatles’ music...

An Indian story of food, longing and loneliness

  Ila, a young Mumbai housewife, tries to stimulate the unresponsive appetites of her husband by cooking a splendid set of dishes and sending them by bicycle courier to his office for lunch. When the courier delivers her delicious meal...

One man’s quest to replicate a Dutch master

  With color and texture, Johannes Vermeer brought small corners of the world to life. Vermeer’s paintings seem to glow with inner illumination and can resemble...

The Spy Who Came For His Daughter?

 In the middle of a high-stakes operation in Belgrade, Serbia, a U.S. mission to thwart the sale of a dirty bomb by a pair of international masterminds known as the Wolf and the Albino, CIA agent Ethan Renner (Kevin Costner) stops to call his daughter for her birthday. In his...

Computer imaging and the decline of imagination

Movies have enjoyed wide appeal since the dawn of the nickelodeon. However, no one could have imagined that cinema would become a disposable subset of a gargantuan tentacled monster called computerized entertainment, reducing the 20th century’s only new art form into an...

George Clooney’s Art Commandos

The Nazis were responsible for genocide and a brutal war of conquest. They were also among the world’s greatest art thieves, stripping museums and private holdings of the paintings and sculpture desired by Germany’s leaders. And several of the top...
 Enigmatic and fascinating, A Touch of Sin tells several complementary stories from contemporary China. Director Jia Zhangke exposes the country’s odd juxtaposition of Confucianism, communism and capitalism. In A Touch of Sin, China is a place of crime and violence, migrant labor and stern...
 Unprotected sex is the monster in this horror flick, where careless club life leads the young protagonist Samantha (Najarra Townsend) into the inhibition-free oblivion of alcohol. She ends the night in a sexual encounter she barely...
 This Swinging London period piece was long known mainly to record collectors for its George Harrison soundtrack. Out now on Blu-ray, Wonderwall (1968) follows a myopic, daffy scientist (Jack MacGowran) with Einstein hair and lab coat as he discovers a wilder, more colorful world while spying...
“Monsters” ran for three seasons (1988-1991) but like the vampires that were its occasional guest spots, it enjoyed an afterlife—on syndication and the Sci-Fi Channel. All 72 episodes are included on a DVD set. Half-hour long in the tradition of “Twilight Zone,” they tell compact stories of...
 Nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, this Belgian movie deals with familiar subjects: the idyll of love, the unexpected arrival of a child, the death of that little girl from cancer and the recriminations that follow. What’s distinct in The Broken Circle Breakdown is the setting: the banjo-fired...
Youthful host Josh “It’s Awesome!” Bernstein guides the first episode of the History Channel’s three-part series. Determined to follow the Norsemen’s path to the New World, Bernstein sails from Denmark to Iceland on a replica Viking ship (but opts for planes and powerboats as he treks from there...
 Bad actions have terrible consequences when a lavish-living lawyer (Michael Fassbender) falls into the orbit of the drug traffickers he represents. Written by Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men) and directed by Ridley Scott, The Counselor is a superb contemporary film noir set in a bleak...
 Helena Bonham Carter is magnificent—and well out of her recent wacko-role comfort zone—as Elizabeth Taylor in this believable dramatization of a troubled 1983 Broadway run with Richard Burton. Her Taylor is emotionally demanding and alcohol frazzled; Dominic West is credible as Burton...
Bad Dreams opens in a ’70s commune whose charismatic leader preaches peace, love—and mass suicide. Thirteen years later, the sole survivor, Cynthia (Jennifer Rubin), awakens from a coma in a mental hospital. The group therapy meant to help her “fit into the ’80s” isn’t the only problem...
 Comedians and musicians helped Amnesty International reach the masses with its mission to free political prisoners. For its 50th anniversary show, shot live at Radio City Music Hall, Amnesty recruited Coldplay and Mumford & Sons but focused on comedy with stand-up by Ben Stiller and Sarah...
 Matthew Lewis’ novel The Monk (1796), a milestone in gothic fiction, is brought to life in French director Dominik Moll’s elegantly filmed adaptation. Capucin Ambrosio (Vincent Cassel) is the most acclaimed preacher in...
This conspiracy thriller is surprisingly credible and features the best Nicolas Cage performance in years. Following his wife's (Jones) brutal rape, English teacher Will Gerard (Cage), accepts the sort of offer you can't refuse from a stranger......

For the week of May 14

Gina Carano, the star of Haywire, is a real-life mixed martial arts fighter. Unlike most waif-like actresses cast in similar roles, at 5'8" and 145 pounds, Carano looks like the real McCoy. When she defeats any number of male assailants, her brute strength......
The issue of a woman raped by a pair of lusty gods, when we meet Theseus (Henry Cavill), he is a grown man who clings to his mommy, and has learned the fighting arts from a kindly sage (John Hurt) serving as his father figure......

Releases for Feb. 28

The undeniably handsome Hugo draws visual poetry from both its storyline and its setting in a Parisian train station. Adapted from Brian Selznick's book, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, the film's first half depicts the travails of orphaned 12-year-old......
This ensemble production trades plausibility for a shot at winning a congeniality award. Stiller plays Josh Kovacs, building manager of a Trump-like Tower. His daily pep talk to staff reminds them that security and service distinguish......

Releases for Jan. 27

Author Mark Obmascik became interested in the Big Year, a 365-day bird-watching marathon, because it sends birders crisscrossing North America to sight the highest possible number of avian species. Each birder spends a small......

Home Video Releases: 01/10/12 to 01/23/12

"Moneyball" views pro baseball from an insider's perspective, observing opposing camps caught in the seismic shift ushering in a new era. The film opens in 2001. After losing their championship bid and small roster of star players......
In the fifth installment of the long-lived Final Destination franchise, a group of young people escapes a horrific death, then slowly realize that death continues to stalk them. The same premise informs all five films. A young man foresees a terrible......
We meet Cataleya as a child in Columbia where she escapes a brutal crime lord who murders her parents. She gains entry to the U.S. and moves in with her uncle Emilio (Cliff Curtis), an assassin. Fifteen years later, Cataleya has learned his trade, and has......