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Album Reviews
Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2009

Black Clouds & Silver Linings (Roadrunner Records)

Dream Theater ranks among America's most consistent metal bands, both in terms of output and critical acclaim/reproach. Black Clouds & Silver Linings continues that trend. The group's 10th studio release in 20 years contains such signature Dream Theater elements as long, overworked songs (six songs in 75 minutes); muscular and complex musicianship; technical albeit catchy arrangements; repetition of musical motifs; and James LaBrie's...
Album Reviews
Monday, Aug. 3, 2009

The Show Is on the Road (Ramseur Records)

The Show Is on the Road serves as a love letter to both the longtime New York City home of anti-folk pioneer Paleface and his new dwelling space in Concord, N.C., where he sought refuge after nearly dying from alcohol abuse. In a voice both raw and intimate, with accompaniment only from an acoustic guitar and occasional...
Album Reviews
Monday, July 27, 2009

Dreaming in Neon

Many electric guitarists feel the need to get all self-indulgent when recording instrumental albums, but Peter Mac is above that. Perhaps it's because the ax slinger for the Milwaukee Bucks' house band, Streetlife, isn't just adept on the frets. Mac plays guitar, keys and sometimes bass on most of the 11 tracks on Dreaming in Neon...
Album Reviews
Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Latest (Cheap Trick Unlimited)

Cheap Trick has been around forever, or so it seems. Actually, it's been 35 years since the four lads from Rockford, Ill., formed the band that would become a cornerstone of power-pop, and 20 million albums later-some much better than others-the band is still going strong with The Latest, a cleverly titled follow-up to 2006's consistently effective Rockford...
Today in Milwaukee
Sunday, July 5, 2009

Tonight @ Marcus Amphitheater, 9 p.m.

In case you missed it, Southern Rock godfathers Lynyrd Skynyrd and longtime fan Kid Rock teamed up last year for the successful “Rock and Rebels” tour. In fact, it was so successful, that both artists are doing it again. The pairing actually makes sense, considering how Rock’s “All Summer Long,” a rip-snortin’ mash-up of Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves of London” and Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama”, has dominated radio and introduced both the naughty rap-rocker...
Today in Milwaukee
Saturday, July 4, 2009

Tonight @ U.S. Cellular Stage, Summerfest, 10 p.m.

Although Anberlin may not be a “Christian band,” its members acknowledge that they are a band of Christians. However subtle or obvious that distinction, one thing is clear: These Floridians manage to wrap their beliefs in savvy lyrics set to intoxicating alt-rock anthems—and if their uplifting messages actually contribute to making today’s kids happier, better-adjusted and more socially conscious, more power to ’em...
Today in Milwaukee
Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tonight @ Marcus Amphitheater, 7:30 p.m.

It’s been two decades since Bon Jovi made a 1989 April Fool’s Day stop at the Bradley Center on the band’s grueling 17-month, 232-date “New Jersey Syndicate Tour,” but Jon and the boys are still going strong. Missing only one original member (bassist Alec John Such, who was dismissed 15 years ago), Bon Jovi has survived grunge, boy bands and nu-metal—not to mention spandex and hairspray—to accomplish...
Today in Milwaukee
Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tonight @ M&I Classic Rock Stage, Summefest, 10 p.m.

Here’s a shocker: MelodicRock.com—one of the Internet’s most respected hubs for fans of feel-good hard rock, heavy metal and power-pop—proclaimed Loverboy’s Just Getting Started as 2007’s “Album of the Year.” “What a second,” we can hear you cry. “Loverboy has released an album since 1981’s quadruple platinum...
Album Reviews
Monday, June 1, 2009

Nothing Rhymes With Woman (Vanguard)

Not many words may rhyme with "woman," but the Virginia-based quintet Carbon Leaf still finds plenty to say on its eighth CD. Treading the squiggly line between indie rockers and jam band, the appeal of these casual dudes-particularly verbose vocalist/lyricist Barry Privett-lies in their ability to not get too worked up about...
Album Reviews
Tuesday, May 19, 2009

On My Way Back Home (RockIt)

You can hear the heartland in singer-songwriter Dustin Lee's clear, deep and comforting voice. The veteran of several bands in Iowa and Illinois, Lee moved to Milwaukee about two years ago and recently teamed up with other area musicians (including guitarist Peter Mulvey and keyboardist Rick Forkes) to record On My Way Back Home...