Juiceboxxx

Known for beer-brewing, a heavy German contingent and little else, Milwaukee is far from the center of hip-hop culture. Out to change his hometown's reputation is Juiceboxxx, a 21-year-old rapper and producer whose sound lies somewhere between Big Daddy Kane and the Beastie Boys. An unassuming MC, the slight, geeky rapper is pure kinetic energy in live shows, captivating audiences with a punk rock energy …

Continental Divide: Golden Throats

Thick with reverb, swirling Rhodes piano and a chorus of distorted bells, Continental Divide's Golden Throats is a shabby collection of five imperfect songs—which isn't meant as a slight. The album's charm lies as much in the music as its visible seams. Most songs begin with Nathan Pemberton's hesitant vocals echoing over simple progressions on guitar or piano. His voice is the most prominent instrument, …

The Kiss Off

Though they formed last year in Brooklyn, The Kiss Off could easily pass as Manchester natives from the early '80s. The band was founded by guitarist Adam De Rosa and bassist Nathan Lithgow, who lay distorted melodies over catchy drumming and synth drones. Sam Tyndall's vocals complete the band, which sounds something like a better-produced Joy Division or a more brooding Franz Ferdinand. The band …