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Monday, December 29, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 18.0° F  Overcast
The Daily


Three Madison bands on Crustacean Records gear up for SXSW 2008

A trio of Madison bands is gearing up for the Crustacean Records showcase next week at South By Southwest, the annual springtime music and multimedia conference held in Austin, Texas. The local independent label is presenting its inaugural showcase at the festival, which has grown over the last two decades into a massive spectacle drawing international interest and participation. Diving into this maelstrom are local rock darlings Droids Attack, The Gusto, and Screamin' Cyn Cyn & the Pons, all taking their bows along with Crustacean amidst the spectacle. >More
 The rock pile

The six weeks or so after Christmas aren't supposed to be a strong period for music, local or otherwise. But this winter the Isthmus mailbox has overflowed with what may be a record number of new CDs by local artists. I'm not sure why that is, but it's sure made cabin life a little more bearable as the snow has piled up level with the windowsills. With luck, you'll find some of these homegrown albums as enjoyable as I have. >More
 Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra & Manuel Barrueco: Strings attached

If there must be a guitarist as guest soloist, just as well it be the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra's latest choice, Cuban-born Manuel Barrueco - clearly one of today's leading masters of his instrument. Still, his pair of offerings were quite uneven last Friday at the Capitol Theater. >More
 Sound engineers cook up music in Madison

Jon Chvojicek hates to admit it, but when a band sounds good, it's because that band knows how to sound good. "You can't polish a turd," he says during a moment of downtime between early and late shows at the High Noon Saloon, the well-regarded Madison music club where he is lead sound engineer. >More
 Galactic rocks the Majestic from the corner to the block

Digging the family Pinto out of a snow bank is a helluva lot different than seeing it float down the street. Each situation could certainly inspire a somber lyric, though one would more likely spark a heart wrenching minor key riff. As the New Orleans based band Galactic recorded their last album a few years back, From the Corner to the Block, Hurricane Katrina hit and scattered band members around the country. But instead of changing their tune to echo the devastation to their home, they picked up the pieces, went to the Poconos and pumped out a pulsating fusion LP that screams change louder than an Obama rally. >More
 Cho-Liang Lin: Adult in charge

As an antidote to the overhyped Joshua Bell, the Madison Symphony Orchestra presented a responsibly mature artist as its guest soloist at Overture Hall last weekend. Cho-Liang Lin, among the world's leading violinists, brought his refinement to Beethoven's "Violin Concerto," the first grand example of the form. >More
 Christopher Taylor: A great adventure

Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas are the backbone of his output. As with no other genre in which he composed, they run through his life documenting his creative capacities in evolution. >More
 Steve Poltz: This time it's personal

Charm and wit have always come easy for Steve Poltz, dating back to his days fronting the '80s comedy-rock band the Rugburns. But Poltz admits there's a dimension of songwriting he's typically shied away from because it makes him uncomfortable. >More
 Gretchen Parlato and Esperanza Spalding: Dynamic duo

The Isthmus Jazz Series double bill featuring the Gretchen Parlato duo and the Esperanza Spalding trio is your chance to check out some ascending stars of the 21st-century New York sound. The pair of young heirs to the legacy of bebop, hard bop, post-bop and Latin jazz who'll take the Wisconsin Union Theater stage on Feb. 15 are proof positive that America's definitive art form has escaped the formidable jaws of commercial radio and hip-hop culture. >More
 Adam Isaac & the People: The Prince of the city

Adam Isaac & the People don't care much about labels. But all four members are sure about one thing: The groove rules. Born from the ashes of Universal Sound, the 18-month-old Madison quartet gets its spark from singer/bassist Isaac, a tall, effusive Wisconsin native with an unquenchable jones for the Prince songbook. He's got a knack for penning urgent pop-funk grooves that often rise above the usual dance-floor fodder, and his bandmates are smart enough to realize that his eclectic musical vision pulses with a special kind of energy. >More
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