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The Milwaukee Bucks' current logo versus their new logo.
The Milwaukee Bucks' current logo versus their new logo.
The new "M" is about as inconsistent as it can possibly get.
The new "M" is about as inconsistent as it can possibly get.

The new Bucks logo is better, but is it good?

The Milwaukee Bucks appear to be gearing up to announce a new logo change, and started the process, rather awkwardly, on April Fools’ Day. First the stadium was lit up with Blaze orange (as a joke) and then the apparent new logo (which was not a joke) was sprayed on the pavement outside the stadium. It's important to remember that the official release date is April 13th and most of this is based on what has leaked out so far, so we may see some changes in the pipes.

Anyway, how does the new logo stack up with what we’ve seen in the past?

First of all, compared to the old logo, this is a huge step in the right direction, but we’re still talking in steps, not leaps.

The Deer

The old logo featured a literal representation of a straight on portrait of a dead-eyed deer with zero personality. No action and no energy, just a deer that was eating in the field one day, then heard a noise and popped it’s head up to see what's up. Then it probably went back to eating grass. Thinking more abstractly, it almost looks like my benign, lazy beagle waiting patiently to get pet. It’s just not exciting. And really, kind of pathetic.

What we believe is the new deer logo still features a straight on portrait of an unmoving deer, but this time it has angry eyes and giant, stylized antlers.

So at least now we have a logo with some purpose. This is something we can work with.

But it doesn't progress much further than that.

Basketball is a game that involves quick moves, clever tactics, and constant energy, but there is nothing dynamic about this logo. The whole thing is mirrored from right to left. There is nothing interesting about that. I want this deer to be doing something. Not running or fighting or playing basketball, but something as simple as turning its head would tell me it’s a three-dimensional living, breathing, exciting team.

Right now it says "we move from one side of the court to the other."

The design aesthetic switches back and forth between straight …

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The cover to NO/NO's first EP, "Drag" was found in the public domain. Originally titled "New Romantic Photo Shoot" 1981.
The cover to NO/NO's first EP, "Drag" was found in the public domain. Originally titled "New Romantic Photo Shoot" 1981. (Photo: Unknown)

NO/NO is not The Delphines (but it used to be)

One of my favorite bands to come out of Milwaukee in the past couple of years was The Delphines, which handled dreamy, poppy shoegaze and fuzzed out rock and roll with a youthful, too-cool-to-care attitude, best experienced in a small, dark club.

The band's shows were frequent and album releases were fast and furious, but also quite abbreviated. An EP here, a cassette single there. Even a YouTube-only release (one of my favorites). In my 2013 interview the band admitted it wasn't terribly interested in full-length releases.

"When we started the band we didn't want to do albums," lead singer Harrison Colby had said.

Eventually the band produces a full-length album called "Hush," but shortly afterward the band quietly broke up.

Disappointment followed. How could we allow this to happen? This band felt like it was composed of sun-bleached driftwood, waiting for a match to drop and set fire to the music scene. It was a band that made Milwaukee's music scene vibrate.

So I was surprised this morning when my phone lit up with a message from The Delphines about a new release:

Three fourths of The Delphines (Harrison [Colby], Lucas [Riddle], and Jeremy [Ault]) have made a new band called NO/NO with singer Cat Ries and just released a new EP.  Drag is available for free on their bandcamp

With curiosity I clicked through and hit play. NO/NO is not The Delphines 2.0. The new sound incorporates more synth and pushes the fuzz into more of a New Wave territory, but it still holds the same achingly disaffected vibe.

Within 30 seconds I dropped everything and got in touch with Colby.

Apparently the marriage of former singer Jami Eaton was the driving reason behind the divorce of The Delphines. "We found all this out mid-way through the recording process for Hush so it was kind of a rough album to finish, mainly because we knew we wouldn't be able to continue after it was done." Colby said. "She couldn't commit to the band nearly as much as before."

There was a brief m…

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The Bublr Bike in its full glory.
The Bublr Bike in its full glory.
The newest kiosk is located at Red Arrow Park.
The newest kiosk is located at Red Arrow Park.
I threw my bag and solar charger in the Bublr basket and took one for a spin.
I threw my bag and solar charger in the Bublr basket and took one for a spin.
The very first kiosk is located at Discovery World.
The very first kiosk is located at Discovery World.
The basket comes with a built-in lock.
The basket comes with a built-in lock.
The lock wraps around the basket and into the bottom. When it's inserted, the key pops out.
The lock wraps around the basket and into the bottom. When it's inserted, the key pops out.

Ev'ryday I'm Bubln': First look at Bublr Bike Share

Midwest BikeShare announced its second kiosk opening today, and the city is abuzz about it (or maybe it's bubbling about it?), so I had to check it out. After signing up online and plunking down the membership fee (you can save $10 on your yearly pass with discount code: bublrnow), I went to checkout my first bike. While there, I saw Kevin Hardman, the launch director for Midwest BikeShare.

"Looking good," I told him. "I love the name: Bublr. It's friendly. It makes this program sound fun."

The name Bublr was derived from the Wisconsin-centric slang for "drinking fountain," which helps localize the program within the community.

"We wanted to make it sound easy," Hardman said, who mentioned that even the term "bike" can be intimidating. "Don't ride a bike, ride a Bublr."

So I did.

The checkout process was easy. Just insert the card you used to sign up, and follow the on-screen instructions. If you haven't signed up online, you can pay a daily fee at the station.

"Some of the instructions need slight updating," Hardman noted. "We're still working to make it more user friendly."

The main problem is that even when you have a membership, the screen still incorrectly says you'll be charged a daily fee, which is not true.

"Soon we'll be mailing out keyfobs," Hardman said.

Keep your card in your wallet; these keyfobs will replace the need to interact with anything besides the bike you want to borrow. Just wave it over the sensor of the bike you want and "beep beep beep," the bike is yours to ride.

The Bublr bikes are designed to be more upright and sit the rider in a comfortable position. The seat height can be adjusted with the flip of a lever. Each bike comes equipped with fenders, skirt guards, chain guards, a rack, a built-in lock and a bell.

I had a bag with me, so I threw it in the basket at headed out.

The inital start was a little different than my preferred bikes. With the upright fork, it felt a little twitchy. I attributed part of this to my bag in …

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One of the 44 Fake A$$ Rappers: Alpha Fo Fum
One of the 44 Fake A$$ Rappers: Alpha Fo Fum (Photo: Kristopher Pollard)
Gold Felice & The Midwest Ugly 3Way Crew wearing KPOLLY tees.
Gold Felice & The Midwest Ugly 3Way Crew wearing KPOLLY tees. (Photo: Kristopher Pollard)

Kpolly brings "Fake A$$ Rappers" to reality

After 10 years, Milwaukeean Kristopher "Kpolly" Pollard’s unique pen and ink illustration style should be recognizable to most of the city’s residents. His work has been shown at HotPop and Lucky Star, but most people will probably recognize those child-like, yet demonically black, oversized eyes due to their prevalence in the 2013 Milwaukee Film Fest ad campaign (Princess Leia has never looked so creepy).

Now Pollard has a Kickstarter that he would like you to back. Or not. It doesn’t matter now, because with 21 days to go the project was officially funded.

"I’m shocked and super grateful that I’m fully funded after only 6 days," he says.

It’s an art book called "Fake A$$ Rappers" and it contains 44 pages featuring a collection of 22 imaginary rapper portraits, and will include a brand new, never-before-seen rappers made especially for this printing. In addition to the portraits, each page gives rapper stats, like first album, seminal song and sample lyrics.

"I was never super into hip-hop, but I started finding it more and more interesting and entertaining," says Pollard, noting that after watching Kanye West perform on Saturday Night Live, an idea sparked. "He had this incredible set and outfit. It was all very visual and amazing. While drawing the series I got incredibly into hip-hop, reading about it and listening to as much as possible. I’m a big fan now."

Until now, the "Fake A$$ Rappers" series has only been shown for limited runs throughout Milwaukee. However, since the project has grown in scope, a new medium was necessary.

"The book seemed like the best venue for them, especially since I’m adding so much more content ‘about’ the rappers," says Pollard. "Their albums, songs and sample lyrics. It’ll be a lot of fun."

While the project has already been funded, you can still pre-order a copy of the book and take advantage of the other benefits the Kickstarter rewards have to offer. The smallest donation level ($20) nets you the b…

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