By Chris Krekling, Special to OMC   Published Aug 03, 2007 at 8:38 AM

Where were you tonight, Milwaukee?  I can guarantee there won’t be a better punk-rock/indie-rock show to hit this city for the rest of the summer, if not the year.  The Cribs, one of the best bands to spring out of the UK in the past five years, hit Milwaukee tonight, and delivered one of the greatest shows this writer has seen in his 24 years.

The Cribs are both punk and still one of the catchiest bands I can think of.  I have been listening to the band habitually for the past couple years now, just waiting for the chance to see The Cribs live.  The hype I built up inside my own mind was almost impossible to live up to, and yet I left The Pabst Theater an even bigger fan than before. 

But here’s the problem.  The crowd was so minimal that when I arrived the usher said I was only the second person to tell him I was there to see The Cribs.  Everyone else was there for the two opening bands, Northern Room and White Rabbits.  Now, don’t get me wrong, those bands are very good, but hearing this upset me greatly.

How can more people in this city not know and love The Cribs?  Now on its third solid album of riffs a la The Strokes and sing-a-long choruses, the band has been deserving of a mass following for a couple of years now.  I have done my best to spread the word about the greatness of this band, but I can only do so much.  The Cribs, in my opinion, is a perfect band, and this city deserves to hear it.  Why the radio doesn’t play the band’s music is beyond me, because it’s just as catchy as the next radio-friendly band’s.

Thursday night was Milwaukee’s first chance to catch The Cribs live, and for those that were there it was an awakening.  This is what punk music is missing.  Not the Good Charlottes or the Green Day’s of mainstream radio, but a trio from Wakefield with the talent and tunes to take over.  In a just world, the Jarman brothers of The Cribs would be penning the hit singles on the airwaves, although that would be the antithesis of what the band stands for.

After the mind-blowing show, my girlfriend and I had no choice but to wait outside and meet its members.  Which we did, after 45 minutes of waiting.  But it was well worth it.  The Jarmans proved to be extremely cool and appreciative of our comments and devotion.  I took it upon myself to apologize for the lack of a crowd that they justly deserve.

They seemed to think that was very nice, and probably agreed, but still said they had a great time.  Even though the theater was not even close to full, and most of the crowd was there to see another band, they were still appreciative and positive that they had done their best.  I found this to be outstanding compared to the current state of music, where most artists would expect everyone to bow down before them.

The Cribs are one amazing band, and put on an incredible show.  I am so happy I finally got to see one of my favorite bands, and sincerely feel sorry for everyone else in this city who slept on it.  Just know that The Cribs will return, and I’d better see that theater packed next time around.