Who doesn’t love a good sequel? Last week, Chicago rock band Overclocked wrapped up the project it started last fall with the “I Wanna Be an Architect 2” EP, a six-track collection of new music written over the last year and a half.
It’s all the rock of the first one, but now with a little more punk.
Mitch De Biase, bass player for the power trio, said he and guitarist Riley Allen trade off writing responsibilities for the band, and each artist’s influences are slathered all over the songs they turn out. Allen, of Northbrook, revels in ’90s alternative, bringing touches of Nirvana, Filter and early R.E.M. to “Green Glimpses,” “A Muse” and the other songs on which he sings lead. De Biase hits harder with Fugazi and Green Day in his corner, and “Happened Today” and “No Reason for Staying Inside” are substantial servings of aggression courtesy of his scream-punk vocals.
Partnered with Trevor Shandling of Highwood on drums since 2014, Overclocked showcases its heavier side in the new set of songs.
“It’s been the same three guys the whole way through, which I feel great about,” De Biase said. “I love that we’ve really had that kind of companionship the whole way.”
As a whole, the EP advocates for change of the norms, be they societal, personal or interpersonal.
De Biase said he likes to keep his subject matter a little broad in his songs, leaving them open to interpretation by listeners.
“If anybody can hear something that I wrote and feel anything about it, number one: that’s an honor for me,” he said. “But also whatever your takeaway, I want people to be able to derive their own meanings.”
He also noted, however, that he does bring some of his own experience into the mix.
“I draw a lot personally from feelings of growth, wanting, a yearning for something personal usually, like growing, changing,” he said. De Biase, who went to Columbia College for audio engineering, recently transitioned into the health care field, completing his Certified Nursing Assistant certification leading to a job at the Kellogg Cancer Center in Evanston. “That kind of makes me yearn for watching other things happen like that, you know. Wanting to see people that I’m close to find that. I’m probably more focused on interpersonal relationships, and how I really want to watch those relationships develop and to not be just OK with whatever job or to always be striving for something, to always be grasping at growing and changing.”
De Biase, who also teaches music at Northbrook’s Bach To Rock, and Allen are also key members of Chicago rock band Conway, and they’re looking forward to both bands getting to play on stage again.
“To get out to play these new songs that we’ve never, ever played for anyone before sounds so good,” De Biase said. “But at least we could get them on Spotify and get them on the internet. So it feels like OK, well, thank God they are at least out there. People can hear them. And I feel like I can at least give it to the world in that way.”