In order to gain some more insight about the Chicago underground music scene, we thought it would be best to talk to someone who not only listens to local bands in Chicago but has grown up with them as well. Sam Kociak, a 20-year-old DePaul student comes from Elmhurst which is home to some incredible musical talent, including Modern Vices, The Orwells, The Symposium, and more. As someone who is familiar with Chicago-based bands, we asked him a few questions to find out more information.
WN: What is your favorite local Chicago band?
Sam: Modern Vices. They’ve strayed away from the stereotypical Chicago Garage Rock sound with a sound that is much more unique. Also, I quite like them as people.
WN: What is your favorite Chicago venue?
Sam: My favorite venue is Park West. It’s a perfect intimate setting, yet big enough for a big band with a big sound to play at. It makes for an amazing concert experience.
WN: What separates the underground music scene from the conventional music scene?
Sam: The underground scene and mainstream music are arguably beginning to have a much finer line between them. I’d say that the ultimate separation is the performance of underground music. It all seems to be much more as though the bands are playing for a party rather than putting on a flashy show.
WN: What makes Chicago’s music scene unique?
Sam: In the Chicago underground scene, the most unique aspect is the fact that each band comes from its own part of the city, and with that, its own personality. The city is big and diverse and with the different backgrounds of the artists, there’s no definitive sound behind the Chicago underground scene, unlike underground scenes such as Seattle or Nashville.
WN: What is something most people wouldn’t know about Chicago music but should?
Sam: What people don’t know about this scene is that many parts of the city where bands aren’t from, are still not recognized. Meaning, it takes a long time for word to travel across the city. So my main word of advice for Chicagoans, is to go to shows no matter if you’ve heard of the band or not, to support fellow Chicago bands and give them a chance.