Each week, longtime Detroit music journalist Jeff Milo of Deep Cutz and “The Milo Show” fame previews his local picks of can’t-miss shows in southeast Michigan. If your ears aren’t still buzzing from July 4th celebrations, make your way over to shows at Sanctuary Detroit, El Club, Ann Arbor Summer Fest and Deluxx Fluxx. See Milo’s picks below.
Friday, July 5
Sanctuary Detroit is a go-to spot for rock music of a certain invigorating degree. You could call it punk or post-hardcore, or maybe even heavy metal, but the point is, if you enjoy rattling catharsis, then this is the venue for you.
And, especially, Cheapshow is the band for you. Varying between tight, spurt-like riffs and soaring, distortion-dashed ballads, with aerobic and intense rhythms and vocals that go from scratchy growls to a softer starkness, Cheapshow is a Detroit-based quartet releasing a new set of songs called “After Everything Is Said and Done.” They’re joined by another post-punk rock band from Detroit called No Vision, and welcoming a band from Grand Rapids called The Quirk.
Listen to Cheapshow’s song “Game Over Man, Game Over.”
Elzhi is hip-hop royalty for the contemporary music scene, having come up and into his own as an emcee and eventually producer starting in the late 1990’s, amidst notables like Obie Trice, Invincible, Phat Kat, and the late rapper Proof. He’s also a former member of Slum Village.
But in 2004, he formed a label with Detroit producer/hip-hop artist Nick Speed and has been developing his solo career over the last decade, with releases like the 2011 mixtape, “Ellmatic,” (a nod to Nas with that title), 2016’s epic album “Lead Poison.” Monica Blaire is joining the lineup, she released her first album back in 2006, blending in R&B and soul as a singer/songwriter and emcee. Eboi Crazy is also on the lineup, leaning more into the satirical side of things when it comes to hip-hop.
Here’s a track from Elzhi called “The Healing Process.“
Saturday, July 6
Summer Krinsky is the singer/songwriter and drummer who leads the band Summer Like The Season. She’s got such a unique voice but also such a unique take on melodic phrasing, on tone and experiments with percussive arrangements. The band that has a knack for creating dreamy, atmospheric textures. It’s electronic, it’s adventurous, it’s utilizing rock instrumentation and breakbeats and bizarre timbres, but also has some choruses that really get stuck in your head. I think they’re a band to watch in 2019.
So for Detroit audiences who do want to swing over to Ann Arbor, you’re looking for the Top Of The Park stage, one of several stages and locales that are activated by this annual, month-long series of cultural programming put on in downtown Ann Arbor
This song is called “Wakey,” by Summer Like The Season.
Stef Chura just put out her second full-length album, “Midnight,” but the big news is that this Detroit-based singer/songwriter is launching her first ever headlining tour. She’s been performing for a decade, having been raised in Alpena, and been rising in the ranks of the global indie-rock scene over the last four years, particularly with 2017’s debut, “Messes,” which paired her signature trilling vocals and elegantly-gnarly guitar licks with a set of kicking indie-rock arrangements produced with Fred Thomas.
“Midnight” is being hailed across the board as a level-up. She worked closely with Will Toledo of Car Seat Headrest on this new batch of songs, and it’s really shown progress, from sonic aesthetics, to emotional depth of the lyrics, to exhilarating new guitar phrases and noise-experimentation. Johnny Ill, another local singer/songwriter who leads an indie-rock/post-punk ensemble, is joining this Saturday set at Deluxx Fluxx, along with an L.A. based band coming to town for the occasion called French Vanilla.
This song, by Stef Chura, one of the first three singles released, is called “They’ll Never.”