Best Metal Bookings

Reggie's Rock Club

Critics' Picks

I've seen great metal in plenty of Chicago venues, but over the past couple years I've found myself at Reggie's more often than any other—and given how frustrating the club's sound can be, varying from barely tolerable to great depending on where you stand in the room, that says a lot about the quality of the bookings. Reggie's owes its metal heart to the combined efforts of in-house talent buyer Elle Quintana (who favors old-school thrash and speed metal such as Exciter and Onslaught), MP Shows (which books at Township and Ultra Lounge as well), and Shane Merrill of Empire Productions (who also does some business at Cobra Lounge and was responsible for the Bolt Thrower shows at Reggie's this month—their first Chicago dates in 22 years). The bands I've seen there include—deep breath—Autopsy, Enslaved, Agalloch, Exhumed, Destruction, Hammers of Misfortune, Napalm Death, Inquisition, Vektor, Pallbearer, Arkona, and the Gates of Slumber, plus locals Cianide, the Skull, Lord Mantis, Superchrist, Bones, Macabre, Nachtmystium, Dawnbringer, and Novembers Doom. And I'm looking forward to plenty more.