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MKE Concert Pick: Something To Do leads a flood of release shows

A group of seven people in formal dress pose on the sidewalk in a residential neighborhood.
Something To Do
Something To Do's album-release show this Friday at X-Ray Arcade leads our weekly concert picks.

Milwaukee’s concert scene has a lot going on, so we look at the shows coming up to find the ones you’ll look back on and be glad you went. Then we add them to our weekly Milwaukee Concert Picks.

Ska and ska-punk haven’t always been at the forefront of the Milwaukee scene, but they have played a part in it for quite a while. Picking up the groundwork laid by The Invaders and The Pacers are bands embracing the genre like Something To Do. Their back catalog is a testament to their love of the genre, and their passion for playing live shows (dressed to the nines) has really perfected their upbeat, horns-fueled sound over the years.

After recently sharing some Midwest tour dates with Grand Rapids ska-punk icons Mustard Plug, who reactivated and put out a new record in 2023, Something To Do takes their turn with a just-released LP and resonant sentiment for the year ahead: Here Comes the Panic.

Despite the name and panic-centric song titles and subjects, Something To Do remains upbeat and ultimately bopable. As the band recently shared with Brooklyn Vegan:

On our last couple of albums, we made a lot of room for pushing our style in a lot of directions, but this one is shorter and pretty dang focused — lots of ska-ish rock and roll. It’s kind of a cliché, but it’s also true: We’re in back to basics mode because the basics really scratch the itch in these rash-inducing times.

During the time we wrote and recorded these songs, we got to play with a ton of great acts — Mustard Plug, Flying Raccoon Suit, Catbite, Joystick, Devon Kay & The Solutions, The Pilfers, The Von Tramps, Space Monkey Mafia in Minneapolis and many more — and I think it subconsciously got us thinking about really digging into our core sound.

Over our last few albums, we’ve done a fair amount of stretching and have had some pretty long albums. This one really got the “all killer, no filler” treatment. … There is some sort of secret magic in having a group of people who’ve worked together for a long while still want to bring their A-games and still give a s*** about new music.

You can find Here Comes The Panic (recorded in Milwaukee at Howl Street Studios) onSomething To Do’s Bandcamp page and the band at X-ray Arcade this Friday to celebrate their album release with a show that includes Devon Kay & The Solutions, Jinksie and Bellends.

More shows worth a go

88Nine Music Director | Radio Milwaukee