WMSE Picks of 2017

Maybe there are too many best-of lists by years’ end, but it must be said, that as far as Milwaukee music aficionados go, no group of people knows music, front-to-back, across all genres, than the DJs of WMSE. You see it on our weekly top airplay charts and hear it for yourself on your radios and through your headphones and computer speakers. WMSE DJs are volunteers because they love music, and it shows: each program is designed, per DJ, to introduce the listener to both old favorites and newly-becoming classics.

Already got a favorite WMSE DJ? Take a peek at what they liked this past year, then check out the rest. You might find your own tastes aligning with DJs whose shows you might not be familiar with. Here’s the best of the best from us, to you. Thanks for another great year of Frontier Radio!

 

Tom Crawford, WMSE Station Manager
Mondays 3pm – 6pm / The Rock Ride + Thursdays 6pm -9pm / Radio Drill Time

Local:
Whips, The Ride
Brief Candles, Retreater
Apollo Vermouth, Crashing Into Nowhere
Juiceboxxx, Freaked Out American Loser
Soul Low, Cheer Up

World:
Aaron Dilloway, The Gag File
Golden Teacher, No Luscious Life
Klein, Tommy
Bill Orcutt, Bill Orcutt
Goshaven, Leaper

Erin Wolf, WMSE Music Director
Tuesdays 12:30pm – 3pm + 6pm – 7pm / The Rockleidoscope Show + Local/Live

Non-local
Acetone, 1992 – 2001
Omni, Multi-task
Corridor, Supermercado
Do Make Say Think, Stubborn Persistent Illusions
Slowdive, Slowdive

Local
Abby Jeanne, Rebel Love
Midnight Reruns, Spectator Sports
Liv Mueller, Liv Sings: Light of the Valley, Shadow of the Mountain
WebsterX, Daymares
Brief Candles, Retreater

Ryan Aschebrook, WMSE Development Director
Saturdays 12am – 3pm / Industrial Zone

International:
iVardensphere, Hesitation
Liebknecht, Produkt [EP]
Street Fever, ENCHAÎNÉ
Horshk, Gate
Mr. Kitty, A.I.
Eisfabrik, Null Kelvin

Local:
No/No, Twentysomethings [EP]
GGOOLLDD, Teeth [EP]
Klack, Do You Klack
Whips, The Ride
Dramatic Lovers, “Make Believe” b/w “Made It My Own” [7″]

Sid McCain, WMSE Promotions Director
Wednesdays 12:30pm – 3pm / Squid Inc.

Queens of the Stone Age, Villains
Grandaddy, Last Place
Whips, The Ride
LCD Soundsystem, American Dream
Midnight Reruns, Spectator Sports

Nickie Rouleau, WMSE Underwriting Director
WMSE DJ sub / various shows

Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
Sylvan Esso, What Now
Midnight Reruns, Spectator Sports
Kesha, Rainbow
Abby Jeanne, Rebel Love
Soul Low, Cheer Up
Phoenix, Ti Amo

Paul Host
alternating Saturdays 3pm – 6pm / Milwaukee Rock Posters & Why My Head Hurts

Cheese Of the Goat, “Too Fat”
Guerilla Ghost, “Sound Of Da Police”
Burning Sons, “Bombs of Despair”
Bad Bread, “Mold Mania”
f/i, “Molire Corpus Tuum Ex Somno, Vir Mortue!”

Scott Lucey
alternating Thursdays 6am – 9am / Digital Dumplings In Analog Gravy

Knox Fortune, Paradise
Sampha, Process
Dirty Projectors, Dirty Projectors
Cut Copy, Haiku From Zero
Jens Lekman, Life Will See You Now

DJ Jank
Tuesdays 9pm – 12am / Those Hip Hop Guys

Quelle Chris, Being You Is Great! I Wish I Could Be You More Often
Westside Gunn, Hitler Wears Hermès 5
Roc Marciano, Rosebuds Revenge
Jay-Z, 4:44
Rapsody, Laila’s Wisdom

Buzz
Mondays 6pm – 9pm / Buzz’s Garage

GBH, Momentum
King Salami & the Cumberland 3, Goin’ Back to Wurstville
U-Men, U-Men
The Monsieurs, Deux
The Pretty Things, The French EPs [reissue]

Jonny Z
alternating Fridays 9am – 12pm / The Chicken Shack

Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives, Way Out West
J.D. McPherson, Undivided Heart and Soul
Son Volt, Notes of Blue
Chris Stapleton, From a Room: Volume 1 + From a Room: Volume 2
Jake La Botz, Sunnyside
Zephaniah Ohora with his Eighteen Wheelers, This Highway
Steve Earle and the Dukes, So You Wannabe an Outlaw

Haven
alternating Wednesdays 6am – 9am / Wave Tank

Gas, Narkopop
John Maus, Screen Memories
Blanck Mass, World Eater
Patricia, Several Shades of the Same Color
Stacian, Person L

Paul Cebar
Wednesdays, 9am – 12pm / Way Back Home

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Soul Of a Woman
Mavis Staples, If All I Was Was Black
Hurray For the Riff Raff, The Navigator
Robert Finley, Goin’ Platinum

Rob Szocik
alternating Sundays 6pm – 9pm / Alternating Currents

Hélène Breschand & Elliott Sharp, Chansons du Crépuscule
W-2 (Sam Weinberg and Chris Welcome), Fanatics
CP (Chris Pitsiokos) Unit, Before the Heat Death
Lean Left, I Forgot To Breathe
Joe McPhee, Damon Smith & Alvin Fielder, Six Situations 
Michael Zerang & Spires That In The Sunset Rise, Illinois Glossolalia 
Heather Leigh & Peter Brötzmann, Sex Tape 
Ballister, Low Level Stink
Gates, Viscera
Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda, The Ecstatic Music of Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda 

Maggie Iken
alternating Thursdays, 6am – 9am / Poundcake Punk

Dead Cross, Dead Cross
Static Eyes, Traps
Holy Sheboygan!, FOUR
Bad Cop/Bad Cop, Warriors 
SIN BAD, It’s Fine

Jerry Glocka
alternating Fridays, 6pm – 9pm / Jerry’s Attic

Robert Plant, Carry Fire 
Backed again by the Sensational Space Shifters, Robert unleashes a new batch of moody, atmospheric, material that pushes the envelope further. Lyrically and musically, we’re taken to exhilarating new heights – as rock, psychedelic folk, blues and world genres are explored. Chrissie Hynde guests on one track.

Van Morrison, Roll With the Punches / Versatile 
Two new Van releases in the space of three months? Come on! Although both contain familiar blues and jazz covers, Van includes re-workings of some of his own tunes and sings the hell out of them. “Versatile” is expertly backed by accomplished players who deliver just the right amount of “cool jazz” to the sessions. While “Punches” has deep blues grooves accented by Jeff Beck on guitar and Chris Farlowe on vocals.

Gregg Allman, Southern Blood 
The final album from Gregg has been universally acclaimed, as well it should. Well-chosen covers by Gregg’s favorite artists get a strong “Muscle Shoals”, southern soul treatment. Sublimely sung by one of the most singular and iconic voices in rock. A great listen from start to finish.

The Raspberries, Pop Art Live 
The 2004 reunion of the original band recorded live in Cleveland finds the band in surprisingly fine form, cutting loose with energetic versions of their hits and back catalog, along with choice covers of Beatles, Who and choir tunes.

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Soul of a Woman 
Another great soul voice and performer is gone to soon. Her final release was recorded during the last year of her life and she sounds as strong as ever. With the always solid Dap-Kings behind her, this record is as amazing as all the others. 70’s soul and funk will live on.

Shopkeeper Ken
alternating Thursdays, 9am – 12pm / The Five & Dime Show

New for 2017
Lau Nau, Poseidon
Les Filles de Illighadad, Eghass Malan
Aldous Harding, Party
Gunn/Truscinski Duo, Bay Head
Akira Kosemura, In the Dark Woods

Reissued in 2017
Alice Coltrane, World Spirituality Classics 1: Ecstatic Music of Alice Coltrane: Turiyasangitananda
Marisa Anderson, Traditional & Public Domain Songs
Joe Henderson (& Alice Coltrane), The Elements
Popol Vuh, Agape/Agape Love/Love & Spirit of Peace
John Wonderling, Day Breaks

Aija
Sundays 12am – 3am / Under the Influence of Aliens

Toro Y Moi, Boo Boo
Great Grandpa, Plastic Cough
Whips, The Ride
King Krule, The Ooz
Slowdive, Slowdive

Tom Wanderer
Thursdays 3pm – 6pm / The Tom Wanderer Radio Experience

Shilpa Ray, [Shilpa Ray] Stars As Door Girl
Alice Coltrane, World Spirituality Classics 1
Run The Jewels, RTJ3
Piles, Expeller
Breeders, “Wait In The Car” [single)]

The Good John
alternating Fridays 9am – 12pm / The Chicken Shack

Jeremy Pinnell, Ties of Blood and Affection
Tyler Childers, Purgatory
Joseph Huber, The Suffering Stage
Robert Finley, Goin’ Platinum!
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Soul Of a Woman

Craig Mertes
Tuesdays 6am – 9am / The Shape Of Rock

Midwives, No

I am bummed that this is Midwives last album, they continue to grow and refine their songwriting. This is their catchiest album yet perfectly balanced with raucous noise.

Piles, Expeller

Piles trade some of their noise-pop for rock’n’roll hooks and it sounds great. Every song here will work its way into your ears and not let go.

Whips, The Ride

Grade A rock and roll that builds on their debut album.

Heavy Hand, Prerapture Era

Noisy, sometimes driving, sometimes jangly, always entertaining punk rock.

Abby Jeanne, Rebel Love

Abby Jeanne’s debut does not sound like a debut, it sounds like she has been at this for years. Rarely do tales of struggles with drugs and their consequences sound so good. The band does an excellent job ensuring her voice the centerpiece of Abby Jeanne’s fuzzed out R&B.

Andy Turner
Fridays 12pm – 3pm / Zero Hour

Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires, Youth Detention
Coco Hames, Coco Hames
Thee Wylde Oscars, Rosalita!
John Wesley Coleman III, Microwave Dreams
Don Bryant, Don’t Give Up on Me

Cal Roach
Tuesdays 6pm – 7pm / Local/Live

Top 5 Local Releases

milo, Who Told You to Think??!!?!?!?!
WebsterX, Daymares
Jonathan Burks, Getting High
Sundial Mottos, Sundial Mottos
Jon Mueller, dHrAaNwDn

Top 5 Non-Local Releases

St. Vincent, MASSEDUCTION
Circuit des Yeux, Reaching For Indigo
BardSpec, Hydrogen
Open Mike Eagle, Brick Body Kids Still Daydream
Godflesh, Post Self

Dr. Sushi
Tuesdays 9am – 12pm / Dr. Sushi’s Free Jazz BBQ

Ex Eye, Ex Eye 
Chicago Edge Ensemble, Decaying Orbit
Rudresh Mahanthappa’s Indo-Pak Coalition, Agrima
Steve Coleman’s Natal Eclipse, Morphogenesis
Vijay Iyer Sextet, Far From Over

Justin Bittenbender
Thursdays, 3am – 6am / Thirty-Three and a Thursday 

Irepress, Tres(I)
(first “new” music in eight years and at only two songs it’s impressive to have made this list.)
The Physics House Band, Surrogate Head
Do Make Say Think , Stubborn Persistent Illusions
William Ryan Fritch, Behind the Pale
Grails, Chalice Hymnal

Andy K.
alternating Thursdays, 9am – 12pm / The Five & Dime Show

MOONER, tabiat 
Gunn-Truscinski Duo, Bay Head
Shackleton with Anika, Behind The Glass
John Wonderling, Day Breaks 
Akira Kosemura, In The Dark Woods 

Sonia
Fridays 3pm – 6pm / The Blues Drive

Gregg Allman, Southern Blood
Chuck Berry, Chuck
Elvin Bishop, Elvin Bishop’s Big Fun Trio
Taj Mahal and Keb’ Mo’, Tajmo
Todd Rundrgren, White Knight

Jon Blick
Thursdays, 12am – 3am / Overnight Sensations

Abby Jeanne, Rebel Love
Lee Baines III & The Glory Fires, Youth Detention
Cigarettes After Sex, Cigarettes After Sex
Ray Wylie Hubbard, Tell The Devil..I’m Getting There As fast As I Can
Joseph Huber, The Suffering Stage
Randy Newman, Dark Matter
Brett Newski, The Worst of Brett Newski
Zach Pietrini Band, Holding On To Ghosts
St. Vincent, MASSEDUCTION
The Yawpers, Boy In A Well

Eric Von Munz
Thursdays 12:30pm – 3pm / The Von Munz Vinyl Variety Show

Xposed 4Heads, Urgency Squad
Whips, The Ride
Platinum Boys, Buzz
Indonesian Junk, Stars In the Night
King Eye and the Squirts, Demonseed

Dr. Fell + DJ Ascot
Fridays 6am – 9am / Jing Jong Triple Play 

Dr. Fell
Methyl Ethel, Everything Is Forgotten
Timber Timbre, Sincerely, Future Pollution
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, Polygonawanaland
Thundercat, Drunk
Juana Molina, Halo
OCS, Memory Of a Cut Off Head
Nick Hakim, Green Twins
Corridor, Supermercado
Nora Erez, Off the Radar
LCD Soundsystem, American Dream

DJ Ascot
Timber Timbre, Sincerely, Future Pollution
Aquaserge, Laisse ca être
Harriet Brown, Contact
Washed Out, Mister Mellow
Mount Kimbie, Love What Survives
Damaged Bug, Bunker Funk
DUDS, Of A Nature Of Degree
John Maus, Screen Memories
Corridor, Supermercado
Slugabed, Inherit the Earth

Grant
alternating Mondays, 6am – 9am / The Happy Monday Show

The Magnetic Fields, 50 Song Memoir
Queens of the Stone Age, Villains
The New Pornographers, Whiteout Conditions
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Soul of a Woman
LCD Soundsystem, American Dream
Sylvan Esso, What Now
Run the Jewels, RTJ3
Gorillaz, Humanz
The National, Sleep Well Beast

Ryan + Wendy
Fridays 3am – 6am / The Pit

Cowboys (Hozac Records)
So What (Just Add Water Records)
Lawless (new Milwaukee band)
Gino And The Goons (Total Punk Records)
Brain Bats (Milwaukee)
Her Again, Too Shy

Matt Schoeffler
3rd Wednesday of the month 6pm – 9pm / City Rock Showgram

The Menzingers, After the Party
Racquet Club, Racquet Club
Converge, The Dusk In Us
Glassjaw, Material Control
Matt Pond PA, Still Summer

AdamZero
WMSE DJ sub / various shows

Bonobo, Migration
tUnEyArDs, “Look  At Your Hands” [single]
Gift of Gab, Rejoice! Rappers Are Rapping Again! [EP]
DJ Format & Abdominal, Still Hungry
Depeche Mode, Spirit

Bob Midnight
Tuesdays 7pm – 9pm / Midnight Radio

Hiss Golden Messenger, Hallelujah Anyhow
Garland Jeffries, 14 Steps to Harlem
Ha Ha Tonka, Heart Shaped Mountain
Nick Heyward, Woodland Echoes
The Barr Brothers, Queens of the Breakers

Pat Buckley
alternating Mondays 6am – 9am / The Happy Monday Show

Jay-Z, 4:44
Kamasi Washington, Harmony Of Difference
LCD Soundsystem, American Dream
Bjork, Utopia
Homeshake, Fresh Air

Alex Stafford
Saturdays 3am – 6am / Brew City Brutality

Mastodon, Emperor of Sand/Cold Dark Place [EP]
Queens of The Stone Age, Villains
Foo Fighters, Concrete and Gold
Electric Wizard, Wizard Bloody Wizard
NIN, Add Violence [EP]
Brand New, Science Fiction
Power Trip, Nightmare Logic
Darkest Hour, Godless Prophets & The Migrant Flora
Greta Van Fleet, From The Fires/Black Smoke Rising [EP]
Motorhead, Under Cover

E-Form
WMSE DJ sub / various shows

LCD Soundsystem, American Dream
Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
Sampha, Process
SZA, CTRL
Slowdive, Slowdive

Rick Israel
alternating Wednesdays 9am – 12pm / Urban Fantasy

Matthew Shipp Quartet, Not Bound
Roscoe Mitchell, Bells For the South Side
Sean Jones, Live From Jazz at the Bistro
Stacey Kent, I Know I Dream: The Orchestral Sessions
Charles Lloyd New Quartet, Passin Thru

Rose
Sundays, 10:30pm – 12am + alternating Mondays, 12am – 3am / Female Focus + Rock & Blues

Flogging Molly, Life is Good
Uptempo and upbeat new album from longtime Celtic punk band.

Nightwish, Vehicle of Spirit (Live at Wembley)
Finnish band’s exciting performance with Floor Jansen as main vocalist.

Zoë Schwarz Blue Communication, This is the Life I Choose
U.K. blues band with lively upbeat music.

Dee Dee Bridgewater, Memphis…Yes, I’m Ready
Amazing covers of blues and R&B classics.

Terra Lightfoot, New Mistakes
Singer-songwriter, indie rocker from Canada with engaging songs.

The Rural Alberta Advantage, The Wild
Band from Toronto, Canada with well-crafted indie rock/Americana music.

Best Local CD
Midnight Reruns, Spectator Sports
Great rock n roll with excellent musicianship.

Best Local EP
Rocket Paloma, Rocket Paloma EP
Creative songs from talented indie rock band.

Erik Void
Fridays 12am – 3am / Everything That Rises Must Converge

The Prids, Do I Look Like I’m In Love?
Airiel, Molten Young Lovers
Pia Fraus, Field Ceremony
Slowdive, Slowdive
Deafcult, Auras
Bellavista, Sun and Skyway
Brief Candles, Retreater

Rich Mars
Wednesdays 6pm – 9pm / City Rock Showgram

Top three LPs
Black Lips, Satan’s Graffiti Or God’s Art
Ron Gallo, Heavy Meta
Sweet Apple, Sing The Night In Sorrow

Next six favorites
Liv Mueller, Liv Sings: Light of the Valley, Shadow of the Mountain
Lee Bains III + the Glory Fires, Youth Detention
Kelley Stoltz, Que Aura
Chuck Prophet, Bobby Fuller Died for Your Sins
Juliana Hatfield, Pussycat
Robyn Hitchcock, Robyn Hitchcock