You gotta love a city whose major concert hall changed its name to match the fictional venue where Spinal Tap performed in the legendary mockumentary. Alas, beer is probably the first thing that comes to mind when you think Milwaukee–or maybe zoo animals, if you’re into that–but it does have a bit of metal history as well.
According to those who were there, the Milwaukee Metalfest was one of the premier events of its kind in the ’90s, not just in North America, but anywhere. Sadly, it’s said to have taken a huge nosedive since the turn of the century, and there are all kinds of horror stories about shitty sound, pay-to-play schemes and lack of promotion that plagued the event to the point they had to pull the plug. I won’t get into any of that here, but you’re more than welcome to read about it in your spare time.
In any case, a new metal festival has emerged in the Milwaukee suburbs, and while it’s much more subgenre-specfic, tis perfectly suited to a doom-metal elitist such as myself:
Dream Death and Penance and Victor Griffin? Oh my!
Originating in the much-smaller city of Kenosha, the two-day doomfest moved to Milwaukee last year, mere miles from the airport. Suffice to say it’s still somewhat small-scale–even I haven’t heard of some of these bands. But if your idea of a good time is two days of downtuned, depressing despondency, I don’t doubt you’ll dig it. Me, I’m especially stoked to see the reunion of not one, but two Pittsburgh cult acts (even if I already saw Dream Death in their hometown last year), and check out what Victor Griffin’s up to these days. Not to mention that TGOS and Iron Man are always awesome, and catching Orodruin is always special, since they can no longer come to Canada.
I’m also pretty stoked to see Pale Divine for just the second time–it’s been four years–but my sleeper pick of the fest has gotta be King Giant. The Virginia-based band made some noise with their debut Dismal Hollow, which combined civil-war themed lyrics with slow southern doom… oh, and zombies. They’re set to take the stage just before dinnertime, at 5:15 on Saturday. I’ll hafta skip dinner cuz there isn’t anybody worth skipping afterwards!
Days of the Doomed III @ The Blue Pig, Cudahy, WI, June 21st to 22nd. Check out their website for more info.
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