Madison calendar, November 3 through 9

DJ Spinn, YG, Marina Franklin, Sloan, and more events of note in Madison this week. | By Emili Earhart, Scott Gordon, Mike Noto, Grant Phipps, Joel Shanahan

DJ Spinn, YG, Marina Franklin, Sloan, and more events of note in Madison this week. | By Emili Earhart, Scott Gordon, Mike Noto, Grant Phipps, Joel Shanahan


DJ Spinn plays Nov. 4 at The Sett in Union South.

DJ Spinn plays Nov. 4 at The Sett in Union South.

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Patrick Rothfuss. Agricultural Hall, 5 p.m. (free)

A Room Of One’s Own and the UW Working Class Student Union have joined forces to bring Midwestern fantasy lord and beardo philanthropist Patrick Rothfuss in for a couple of speaking events this week. The Stevens Point-based, best-selling author of 2007’s The Name Of The Wind and founder of the Worldbuilders charity will be giving a reading and Q&A on November 3 at Agriculture Hall and a keynote speech and Q&A on November 4 at Bascom Hall. These engagements may serve as a great opportunity to grill Rothfuss on the long-awaited release date of The Doors Of Stone, which will conclude the author’s Kingkiller Chronicle series. —Joel Shanahan

Destroyer, Kevin Krauter. Union South Sett, 8 p.m. (free)

For better or worse, Vancouver-based singer-songwriter, New Pornographers member, and Destroyer mastermind Dan Bejar’s breathy rasp is one of the more instantly recognizable voices in contemporary folk-rock. Maybe it’s how dangerously close said voice comes to tumbling out of key or just flat-out not working that ultimately makes it exciting. Thankfully, 2015’s Poison Season is further proof that Bejar’s creaky voice isn’t all he has to crutch on. Poison Season carries on the yacht-rock smoothness of 2011’s excellent Kaputt, but cuts away some of the nostalgic sax bits and replaces them with emotive string arrangements. The cinematic, neo-classical bent of “Times Square, Poison Season I” finds Bejar crooning over a bed of weeping strings that still manage to float while staying in pop-focus. It’s worth mentioning that these seemingly cabaret-inspired vignettes sort of tie the album together. Meanwhile, “Midnight Meet The Rain” represents Bejar’s punchier side, packed with auxilliary percussion, roaring horns, and an airlocked rhythm section. Finally, downtempo, piano-powered ballad “The River,” with its enveloping chords, sounds like it could be shoved onto any Destroyer album of the last decade. —JS

Marquee Film Festival. Union South Marquee, 7 p.m. (through Nov. 6, free)

The student-run WUD Film Committee’s Marquee Film Festival, now in its second year, is proving to be a welcome gap-filler in Madison’s cinema lineup, offering a extra free shot to see films that otherwise screen once at UW Cinematheque or the Wisconsin Film Festival, get a short run at Sundance Cinemas, or don’t screen theatrically in Madison at all. This year’s 12-title lineup has range: It includes Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembène’s 1966 drama Black Girl, recent South Korean horror hit The Wailing, the new Maya Angelou documentary Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise, and one of the most fascinating documentaries to screen at this year’s Wisconsin Film Festival, the bizarre competitive-tickling investigation Tickled. Chris Lay reviewed the latter in our 2016 WFF notebook. —SG

Satyricon. Central Library, 6:30 p.m. (free)

Screening as part of Central Library’s Cinesthesia series, Federico Fellini’s unhinged episodic epic Satyricon indulges in dizzying romantic fantasy, perversion, and paranoia—qualities that the director increasingly embraced throughout the 1960s. Culminating in a colorful free-form adaptation of titular first century AD novel by Petronius during the reign of Nero in Rome, Fellini’s 1969 take centers on a lavishly costumed ensemble, which he uses to create what film scholar Peter Bondanella calls a “profound sense of estrangement.” Its transformative theatricality imitates a pagan carnival where the ringleading pansexual hero, Encolpius (Martin Potter), and impious accomplice Ascyltus (Hiram Keller) experience the decadence in everything from Eumolpus (Salvo Randone)’s poetry recitation to a gladiator-minotaur battle in an Escher-like labyrinth. —Grant Phipps

Marina Franklin. Comedy Club on State, through Nov. 5, see link for all showtimes.

NYC-based comedian Marina Franklin’s stand-up act is a study in understatement and sly pacing. On a Conan set last year, Franklin started in with a bit about losing weight after getting out of a relationship—which feels like pretty standard territory at first, until, like the proverbial frog in a pot, the audience is suddenly in surreally deadpan territory. But even after she considers becoming morbidly obese in order to physically trap a man, Franklin keeps it restrained and steady, cooly scooting from one punchline to the next and leaving just enough silence in between to keep you guessing. Franklin also hosts a podcast, Friends Like Us, and has appeared on Inside Amy Schumer and movies including Trainwreck. —Scott Gordon


Tony Barba, Dim Lightning. Williamson Magnetic Recording Company, 8 p.m.

Madison-based sax and clarinet player Tony Barba played our GateSound series a few months back, and since then he’s released Winter’s Arms, a solo release that channels his tenor sax through delay units, oscillators, loop pedals, and a Microbrute synthesizer. The five long tracks that result travel between plaintive ambient music and abrasive, searching avant-jazz. On “Therapy” and “Dreamworld,” Barba patiently stacks up concise melodic phrases, and lays on the modulation with slight tweaks rather than grand shifts. “Insomnia,” on the other hand, wrings a plethora of warpy, dissonant sounds from sax and electronics alike. He returns to the place he recorded it, Williamson Magnetic, to play a show celebrating its release. Chicago-Milwaukee trio Dim Lightning will also be celebrating a new album here, the atmospheric yet blistering Your Miniature Motion. —SG


InDIGenous: Nuggernaut. Memorial Union Play Circle,7:30 p.m. (free)

If you’ve stumbled into Alchemy Cafe on a random night, it’s possible that Madisonian jazz jammers Nuggernaut enlivened it with their monthly residency. Boasting drummer Kelby Kryshak and multi-instrumentalist Andrew Traverse (of another band of Alchemy jazz residents, Ted Keys Trio), Nuggernaut explores the danceable and more immediate end of the jazz spectrum through a series of covers and originals. For this installment in the InDIGenous Jazz Series (which is co-presented by the Greater Madison Jazz Consortium and Madison Music Collective), the folks in Nuggernaut promise a full set of new jams. The series focuses on original compositions, so even people who’ve caught the band frequently might hear a different set than what they’re used to. —JS

Auscultation, Kevin Greenspon, Tippy, Feeding Behavior. Arts + Literature Laboratory, 8 p.m.

LA-based electronic musician Kevin Greenspon has released hours upon hours of placid, glittering instrumentals, usually manipulating sound from guitar and tapes. You might expect this to get a bit same-y after a while, but as delicate and float-y as it can all feel, Greenspon invests his pieces with a very active sense of melodic movement and shifting texture. Greenspon’s latest releases, 2015’s To Leave A Mark and this year’s Arbitration Pattern In Two Parts, find him experimenting a bit more with beat-driven pieces and techno influences, but even the more driving and rhythmic moments don’t conflict with the serenity, patience, and detail Greenspon reliably brings to his music. —SG

DJ Spinn & Taso, Contraboi. Union South Sett, 9 p.m. (free)

Over the past several years, through a mutation of homegrown musical styles like juke and house, Chicago has birthed yet another extraordinary branch of electronic music and dance culture, appropriately labeled footwork. The Teklife crew, founded by the late DJ Rashad, has stood out among that movement for sounding simultaneously rooted in old-school Chicago dance music and utterly innovative. And finally, a couple of members of Teklife are coming to Madison, for a free show on campus. Not only will DJ Spinn and Taso, two of the leading Teklife producers (both of whom worked extensively alongside DJ Rashad) be playing, they’re also bringing along dancers from the Era Footwork Crew. While I have no complaints throwing on a footwork mix and just listening, the experience is heightened immeasurably by the skittish, virtuosic, mile-a-minute street-dance that The Era has pioneered. —Emili Earhart

Hiss Golden Messenger. Phil Cook. High Noon Saloon, 9:30 p.m.

Veteran singer-songwriter and vocal Dylan-ite M.C. Taylor ambitiously gathered members of Durham-based Deadhead shredders Megafaun, Bon Iver, and Mountain Man for this year’s Heart Like A Levee, the latest entry for his brainchild Hiss Golden Messenger. We can’t deny that the warm, Tony Visconti-channeling production (particularly on the trudging groove of “Like A Mirror Loves A Hammer” and the slowly shuffling “As The Crow Flies”) brings a pleasing glow to the stabby Rhodes piano, spacious guitar lines, and Taylor’s layered crooning, but we don’t recommend hunting for surprises here. However, we should add that if Taylor has members of Megafaun playing behind him live, you should at least get some bizarro, jammed-out versions of his staunchly indie-folk album cuts that will make it more worthwhile. —JS


Peter Evans And Sam Pluta. Art In, 7:30 p.m.

Electronic musician Sam Pluta and trumpeter Peter Evans have worked extensively in the more adventurous reaches of contemporary jazz—between them is a list of collaborators including Mary Halvorson, John Zorn, and Craig Taborn—but their work together as a duo occupies another bizarro-sound precipice entirely. Between Evans’ expertly mangled trumpet technique and Pluta’s on-the-fly laptop manipulation, the two string together thrillingly taut sequences of squishy, glottal sounds, through which a stray shard of melody can occasionally pass. But on balance, it doesn’t feel especially confrontational or harsh. That’s because Pluta and Evans have a lot of control over their twisted sonics, and are engaged in a sensitive exchange in a shared language, abstract and deconstructed though it may be. —SG

Johnson/Daisy/Johnson. Arts + Literature Laboratory, 8:30 p.m.

Milwaukee-based trumpet player Russ Johnson, Chicago drummer Tim Daisy, and New York City bassist Max Johnson have all distinguished themselves as composers and collaborators in jazz and avant-garde music and the spaces in between. But their short run of Midwestern shows this week will be the first all three have played together. (Daisy and Russ Johnson have played together in many settings, though.) Between the subtly complex melody of Russ Johnson’s 2014 solo album Meeting Point (which also features Daisy), the suspenseful meanderings of Max Johnson’s 2015 album Something Familiar, and the multitude of experimental releases Daisy has dropped in just the past couple of years, it’s hard to know what to expect, but pretty safe to say there will be plenty of adventurous playing involved. For more about Daisy, read our interview with him from earlier this week. —SG

Duck Soup Cinema: Her Wild Oat. Capitol Theater, 2 and 7 p.m.

The 1927 silent comedy Her Wild Oat stars one-time silent-film sensation Colleen Moore in a wildly convoluted farce involving high society, yellow journalism, and according to Bright Lights Film, dialogue-card zingers like “Go sit on a flagpole!” It screens here as part of the Duck Soup Cinema series, which features live accompaniment on the Capitol Theater’s historic organ, and a pre-film slate of vaudeville-style entertainers including comedians and magicians. —SG


YG, Kamaiyah, Sadboys, RJ. Orpheum, 7 p.m.

YG’s evolution from seemingly random one-hit wonder (“Toot It And Boot It”) to one of the most commercially and artistically successful auteurs of West Coast rap has been fascinating to observe. Born Keenon Jackson, he transcended his beginnings as a goofy and limited (if catchy) rapper and managed to sign with Def Jam and tap into a wellspring of ambition. YG leveraged newly sparse and sharp rapping, an unsparing eye for telling detail and panoramic flair for narrative, a background history of burglary charges and membership in the Bloods gang, a stocked features list, and inspired beats from then-dominating producer DJ Mustard into his fantastic and cinematically coherent 2014 debut My Krazy Life. He’ll probably perform a bunch of songs from his new album Still Brazy at the Orpheum on Sunday evening, and it’s interesting to note what has changed since his first album. After a professional break with Mustard, YG decided to fully indulge both a taste for thumping, traditionalist G-funk and a newfound political sensibility that fires up a good bit of the record. This is a little inconsistent at times: the single “FDT” (short for “Fuck Donald Trump,” which serves as the drilled-home chorus) is very fun to chant along with, but doesn’t really make it as a decent song. On the other hand, a song as searing and painfully accurate as “Police Get Away Wit Murder” is a necessary tonic in times of deep unrest. —Mike Noto

Joey Banks Birthday Bash. High Noon Saloon, 6 p.m.

Madison-based drummer has played in a pretty insane array of bands over the years, from oddball psych-rock outfit Honor Among Thieves to Clyde Stubblefield’s Funky Mondays band. That’s in addition to bunch of other musical activities, from producing to teaching to leading the youth-oriented Black Star Drum Line to launching a scholarship fund in Stubblefield’s name. He celebrates his birthday here by playing with several of his outfits, including Black Star Drum Line, Honor Among Thieves, and even the impressively stacked local Steely Dan cover band Steely Dane. —SG


Catch My Soul. Union South Marquee, 7 p.m.

In 1974’s heavily panned Othello adaptation Catch My Soul, actor Patrick McGoohan used his sole directorial credit to essentially make a rock opera out of a Shakespearean tragedy. With late folk legend RIchie Havens in the lead, McGoohan’s take on Othello was shredded by critics to the point that it was repackaged as an exploitation film before nosediving into obscurity. According to the folks at UW Cinematheque, they’ll be showing a freshly restored version of the film. —JS


Josh Harty And The Big Tasty. Crystal Corner Bar, 8 p.m. (free)

I’m not sure what starting a regular gig on election night 2016 portends, but if anyone can make the evening feel a bit more decent and level-headed, it’s Madison-based country/folk songwriter Josh Harty. With bassist Chris Boeger and drummer Scott Beardsley, he’ll be playing the second Tuesday of each month billed as “Josh Harty And The Big Tasty.” Harty says he plans to play mostly original material, including songs from his 2016 album Holding On, which featured both Beardsley and Boeger, and might also throw in a few covers. He also tells me that he’s “trying to figure out if I have any electric chops left in my old age,” which is silly because he’s actually a skilled and tasteful guitarist. —SG


Spotlight Cinema: After The Storm. Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, 7 p.m.

Hirokazu Koreeda’s new film, After The Storm, embodies the creative prolificacy of the Japanese director, who’s known for gripping family dramas in the mold of his idol Yasujiro Ozu ( see: Equinox Flower, screening at Union South Marquee the very next day, Nov 10). While the prevailing aesthetic in Koreeda’s filmography is unobtrusive and patiently formalist, he also draws a great deal of inspiration from the subtleties of human interaction. Brimming with equal parts wistfulness and humor, After The Storm most closely adheres to the mono no aware of his earlier feature, Still Walking; here, his sober and autobiographical explorations of generational tensions are further enhanced by his decision to film the scenes in his old childhood neighborhood. Koreeda’s camera tracks a down-on-his-luck divorcee, Ryota (Abe Hiroshi), a once acclaimed novelist-turned-private detective, who’s now spying on ex-wife Kyoko (Maki Yoko), and their athletic son Shingo (Yoshizawa Taiyo). As the narrative unravels Ryota’s attempts to reclaim their trust from Kyoko’s new suitor and father figure, it all may admittedly seem a half-step removed from a sitcom teleplay. But Koreeda refuses to yield to cheap gags or tidy resolutions, and the film triumphs in its humbling, tender moments. After The Storm gets its Madison premiere here, just a couple months after Koreeda’s last, Our Little Sister, screened at Sundance Cinemas. —GP

Sloan. Frequency, 8 p.m.

Sloan has gotten incredible mileage out of its staunch power-pop approach since forming in Nova Scotia in the early 1990s. Pick any one of their 11 full-length albums (except for maybe 1993’s Smeared) and you more or less know what you’re getting, but that doesn’t make it any less charming or engaging. That’s partially because all four members sing and write songs, making for a lot of variety within constraints, and because the band has consistently struck a nice balance between contemporary (well, in the ’90s at least) sounds and the ’60s nostalgia that power-pop thrives on. And they’re an excellent live band. Sloan’s last studio album was 2014’s Commonwealth. They’re currently touring to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their third album, One Chord To Another. It was recorded after the band nearly hung it up, but its reception helped make them stars in Canada and earned them a smaller but still strong following in the U.S. —SG

Eileen Myles. Central Library, 7 p.m. (free)

Poet and fiction writer Eileen Myles has been a prominent voice for independent literature and the LGBT movement since the 1970s, but also achieved notoriety with a younger audience for their influence on Jill Soloway’s series Transparent. Myles’ will be discussing two works here: A new book of poetry titled I Must Be Living Twice, and the autobiographical novel Chelsea Girls, which was originally published in 1994. —SG

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