Founded by former Lincoln Hall and Schubas talent buyer Matt Rucins in 2004, Tomorrow Never Knows has grown from a scrappy grassroots event to a sprawling fest featuring more than 40 acts over five days. Despite expanding exponentially, the midwinter bash has not lost its love for the underdog, booking more rising stars than big-ticket talent. Here, 16 must-see acts, with the buzziest picks highlighted.


Lady Lamb
Lady Lamb Photo: Shervin Lainez

Wild Belle

Metro, 1/15
Expect upbeat tunes from this Pilsen psych-pop sibling duo.

Lady Lamb

Lincoln Hall, 1/13
Folksinger Aly Spaltro’s dense songs will leave you heartsick.

The Go! Team

Lincoln Hall, 1/16
This Brit band performs supercharged pop as exuberant as its name suggests.


Charly Bliss
Charly Bliss Photo: Jacqueline Harriet


Metro, 1/16
The scrappy four-piece Nashville group plays indie rock with a hard-edged flair.

All Them Witches

Lincoln Hall, 1/14
If a rustic cabin could croon, it might sound something like this Tennessee band.

Charly Bliss

Schubas, 1/15
Get into a dancing mood with lead singer Eva Hendricks’s bubblegum soprano.


Hari Kondabolu
Hari Kondabolu Photo: Courtesy of

Nick Thune

The Hideout, 1/14
How are C-sections and pizza deliveries similar? Thune has the answer.

Hari Kondabolu

The Hideout, 1/16
The punny former Brooklyn lawyer brings a social justice bent to his poop jokes.



Lou Barlow

Schubas, 1/17
After 33 years of band hopping, Barlow releases his first solo album in six years, the heart-rending Brace the Wave.

Torres Photo: Shawn Brackbill


Lincoln Hall, 1/15
Southern alt-rocker Mackenzie Scott imbues her grungy confessionals with a subtle beauty.

American Wrestlers

Lincoln Hall, 1/13
Indie vet Gary McClure’s side gig has plenty of lo-fi charm.


Javelin Photo: Chris Kucinski


Smart Bar, 1/14
Zachary Saginaw’s multilayered sounds full of digital bloops are like the soundtrack to a pitch-black night.


Lincoln Hall, 1/16
Think Passion Pit with a heavy dose of synth.


Smart Bar, 1/14
Tom Fec’s high-octane electronica project is a lesson in the musically bizarre.


Gill Landry
Gill Landry Photo: Andrea Behrends

Gill Landry

Schubas, 1/16
The former Old Crow Medicine Show guitarist puts a brooding twist on contemporary country.

San Fermin with Fifth House Ensemble

Athenaeum Theatre, 1/14
The Brooklyn band blurs the lines of classical and rock in a performance with the local new-music chamber group.