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Top 10 Chicago Bands worth a check, by alternative rock outfit OVERGROW

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Originated in Columbus, Ohio in early 2018, OVERGROW was started to serve as the creative outlet for singer/songwriter Jake Ciccotelli. The debut EP “The House You Made” was released a few short months after the project’s inception, and OVERGROW began touring immediately after.

The band ended a busy 2018 with a signing to Common Ground Collective and a subsequent re-release of “The House You Made” through the label. Feeling that “The House You Made” wasn’t complete on its own, Ciccotelli re-entered the studio to create “The Name We Share” – a second EP that would serve as the other half of the story that began with “The House You Made”. Where “The House You Made” was centered around grieving the loss of his father, “The Name We Share” turned that message into one of healing.


Supported by singles “The Earth Will Swallow Me Whole” and “Bad Heart”, “The Name We Share” showcased Ciccotelli refining his sound and broadening the scope of his lyrical content, providing a platform for the project to expand into uncharted territory in the future. Photos by Alex Zarek & Kaitlyn Johnston.

OVERGROW‘s new track “Spit” is out now, with all of the proceeds from the single and the sales of this t-shirt to be donated to RAINN. The band is preparing a full length record in 2022, and to celebrate this new chapter, we have teamed up with them to give you their top CHicago acts worth a check, compiled by singer songwriter Jake Ciccotelli.

“Love this!! Here’s what I’ve got. There’s so many bands that I love here, I could’ve put Splits, joyful., Stillwell, or Wilmette on here too. Kinda crazy that limiting it to ten felt like too little.” – comments Jake.

Tiny Kingdoms

Tiny Kingdoms blend pop-punk and pop rock in such an unique and interesting way. This band has always been such a great group of people and they’ve never failed to put out amazing art. So much love for TK forever.


I feel like pop-punk has always been a difficult genre to stand out in, but Action/Adventure excels at setting themselves apart without feeling the need to completely reinvent the wheel. They write bigger hooks than I’ve heard since I was a kid, and the way they include heavier elements into their sound makes it so that every riff gets stuck in your head. Pulling Focus was my favorite EP from last year, and it wasn’t even close. Also the most humble and kind people, they deserve the world.


LUCA plays a brand of hardcore that lands somewhere between bands like To the Wind and Advent. Watching this band live reminds me of everything I loved about hardcore when I first found it. Their desire to play shows regardless of what the other bands sound like is something so rare these days, I literally can’t say enough good things about this band.


I love Commonweather more than almost any other band I’ve ever been on the road with. Jon and Alec are also in Overgrow now, so I may be a little biased here, but St. Joseph is one of the best songs I’ve heard in years. Anything they write is gold, and they’re somehow better live than on recording – even as their recordings have tried to catch up over the years.

Boundary Waters

I’ve never met another group of people who loves Moving Mountains as much as me. I want to play a show with this band so badly. Imagine the way we sound, but do it better. That’s Boundary Waters.

The Flips

I remember the first time we played with The Flips and I was truly blown away. There’s so much emotion in everything they do, and their live show honestly should be the standard for anyone in Chicago. They’ve mastered dynamics and are one of the rare bands to make long songs fly by in a live setting.

Long Gone

If you like your pop-punk to lean a little bit more pop, look no further. They also have the cleanest bass player in Chicago, no doubt.


Natalie has one of the best voices I’ve ever heard in my life. I can’t wait to watch this project take over the world. If you like anything that could loosely be called pop music, this is for you.

Rocky Point Holiday

Billy Perkins is one of my favorite human beings, both as a person and as a musician. He’s an unending well of unique ideas, and he’s more passionate about everything he makes than anyone I’ve met. Rocky Point just happens to be my favorite of his many great projects. If the idea of lofi pop-emo sounds like something you’d be into, listen to this.


The first time I heard “Words That Rhyme With Liar”, I felt like I’d known it my whole life. I truly believe this is the next big Chicago pop-punk band. They manage to make pop-punk fun and lighthearted again, which is such a breath of fresh air.

Karol Kamiński

DIY rock music enthusiast and web-zine publisher from Warsaw, Poland. Supporting DIY ethics, local artists and promoting hardcore punk, rock, post rock and alternative music of all kinds via IDIOTEQ online channels.
Contact via [email protected]

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