Stuck Credit: Vanessa Valadez

Workaholic Chicago rocker and audio engineer Greg Obis has suffered through a challenging five years. Both of his parents died (his mother in 2015, his father in 2018), and his ferocious but underrated punk band Yeesh broke up in 2017. That same year, Obis spent time on the road playing bass in indie-rock outfit Clearance; on long van rides, he’d listen to contemporary postpunk bands like Uranium Club and Omni, who tussle with rawboned guitars and relentlessly driving. Obis caught the bug and set about forming Stuck, eventually enlisting three local musicians: drummer Tim Green (Furbie), bassist David Algrim (Gentle Heat), and guitarist Donny Walsh (Surveillance, Krozer). The band’s new debut album, Change Is Bad (out on Obis’s label, Born Yesterday), builds tension without ever boiling over, offsetting its fury with catharsis—but the fury is intense enough that you wouldn’t want your ears on the line if these guys ever lose control. Obis evokes his battered exhaustion with lyrics delivered in a pointed talk-singing style, which sometimes bleeds into serrated howls that energize the band’s precise, propulsive playing. The darkest moments of these songs can gnaw at your psyche, but Obis and company emerge sounding like a Golden Gloves boxer after 12 bloody rounds—bone-tired but undefeated.   v