Exit

20s / Anything goes / Barbeque / Board Games / Burlesque / Dance / Dance Floor / DJ / Drink Specials / Dubstep / Electro / Erotic / Goth / Heavy Metal / High Heels / Hook-up / Hot Dogs / House / Industrial / Late 30s / Live Entertainment / Metal / Movies / No cover charge / Photo Booth / Punk / Punks / Ripped Fishnets / Rock / Rockers / Sexy / Shots / Tank Tops / Tattoos / Theme Nights / TVs / Bar
Exit Exit has been Chicago’s original punk bar since 1981. Spike the hair, stud the jacket, & get to Party Earth for more on this great, gritty bar. Chicago United States 41.910681 -87.660953
3.6 6
Exit - Bar in Chicago.
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Ratings:
Lucas
Adriana
Jonah
Emma

Party Earth Review Under the skull-and-crossbones sign and past the crowd of Mohawk-rocking punks, a small graffitied door leads to Exit, Chicago’s self-proclaimed original punk bar since 1981. Once inside, studded-leather regulars are blasted... ... read full review

  • Hours:

    M–F, Su 9pm–4am, Sa 9pm–5am

  • Recommended as:

    • Night Spot

Party Earth Exit Review

The Scene

Exit has been Chicago’s original punk bar since 1981. Spike the hair, stud the jacket, & get to Party Earth for more on this great, gritty bar.

Under the skull-and-crossbones sign and past the crowd of Mohawk-rocking punks, a small graffitied door leads to Exit, Chicago’s self-proclaimed original punk bar since 1981.

Once inside, studded-leather regulars are blasted by a DJ spinning anything from classic punk to heavy metal, as tattooed girls in corsets and cut-offs dole out shots of whiskey and daily drink specials behind the pair of bars.

Vibrating to the music overhead are two gothic chandeliers, each covered in bras that girls have tossed off after one too many Jameson shots, while TVs along the back wall regularly show old horror flicks, porn, or a strange combination of both.

And if that’s not entertaining enough, three old motorcycles and a stripper pole offer perfect – and frequently used – photo-op fodder.

The gritty theme continues upstairs, where black-lit dead souls and zombies cover the walls and the dance floor is entirely surrounded by chain link, used on Thursdays by dominatrixes who need a place to handcuff their submissives during Bondage-A-Go-Go night.

Although there are two additional bars upstairs and a handful of tables, most people spend their time on the dance floor showing off their best Goth moves, or retreating to the cave-like room in back to smear their lipstick in heavy make-out sessions on a grungy couch.

A hard-rocking staple, Exit is the perfect spot to enter for glorious late-night chaos, 365 days a year.

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Tip from Jonah:

Make sure you come for Bondage A-Go-Go on Thursdays, the longest-running free fetish/bondage show in all of Chicago!

  • Crowd

    Punks, metalheads, Goths, doms, rockers, emos, thrashers, oh my, 20s to late 30s.

  • Entertainment / Music

    Music varies nightly, with DJs usually cycling punk, metal, rock, and industrial, as well as electro, dubstep, and house.

    Ongoing events include Strippertopia on Tuesdays, featuring strippers on the poles and fetish porn on the TVs, drunken board game fun on Wednesdays, free burlesque on last Fridays, and Bondage A-Go-Go on Thursdays, the longest-running free fetish/bondage show in Chicago.

    There’s also a “ManBque” on the last Sunday of every month where DJs spin metal, meat is grilled from 10pm, and lots of girls in bikinis are promised. Free burlesque on last Fridays.

    TVs play a mix of horror movies and porn nightly.

    Photobooth.

  • Food / Miscellaneous

    ManBque on last Sundays includes free hot dogs and other grilled goods from round 10pm.

    Bathroom doors are marked with a large bolt (for ladies) and a large screw (for men).

  • Prices

    No cover charge unless specified online for a particular special event. Beer $3–$6, wine $5/glass, cocktails and shots $4–$8.

  • What to Wear / Dress Code

    Anything goes: studded leather jackets, fishnet tights, corsets, tank tops, jeans, vinyl bondage-wear, heels…and that’s just the dudes.

  • Hot Nights / When to Go

    Mondays for great early week drink specials, Tuesdays for Strippertopia, Wednesdays for Board Games with Broads, Thursdays for Bondage-A-Go-Go, Fridays to let loose with industrial tracks on the dance floor, or Saturdays to rock out to industrial and 80s new wave till 5am.

  • Close By

    Hollywood Grill (1601 West North Avenue) is a funky little diner open 24/7 that attracts the eyeliner-wearing Goth kids in need of a scrambled egg fix after dancing and drinking to Nine Inch Nails remixes all night.

Exit User Reviews

Average rating:
Wild night at a cool place
Jeff W. May 13, 2013
I was brought to exit to photograph a Vaudezilla event. The black door and chain link fence lets you know immediately that this isn't your run-of-the mill hangout. Once the show started in the cozy venue, i found great lighting (lol I am a photographer) and not a bad spot in the house to view the show. Definitely a great piace to see one of their many events.
Intimidating at first, awesome always
Chris M. Oct 19, 2012
So I was at the Hideout with a few friends having a good time listening to indie rock and drinking PBRs and having never heard of the Exit. Then our group met a charismatic friend of a friend named Marshall and it was bromance at first sight with him and my group of friends. He was one of those people you meet and immediately click with and assume you will be best friends forever. We were setting up and knocking down jokes for each other from minute one, one of my friends shared a favorite band with him and by the end of the night we had inside jokes between the four of us. Also by the end of the night I had been to Exit. Marshall convinced us to head just down the dark industrial street from the Hideout and go to Exit. The outside is barely marked and intimidating and the door was manned by a huge, tattooed biker. Then we walked in and my button down shirt seemed way out of place for this punk/goth/biker bar. There are old bikes on the floor and loud industrial and punk music fills every corner. The bartenders, male or female, could kick my ass in second and no one really looked our way. We got some beers (the staff is actually quite friendly) and headed upstairs which is dark, contains some chain link fencing for a cage-like atmosphere and Marshall quickly hit up the dance floor. I felt like I was in Berlin but the whole crowd just invited dancing and losing self-consciousness and soon we were having a great time dancing and meeting people. I think Marshall and I had a dance-off at some point that involved an invisible yet tangible moment we kept pointing back to in a way that we simultaneously did and did not understand. I think we were there until at least 4 am, I think one of my friends left with a girl, and I may have bought PBRs for a biker couple, I honestly do not know. We never saw Marshall again. Sometimes we wonder if he ever existed at all, but he brought Exit into our lives. It is still not my primary scene in any way, I'm far more likely to end up at the Hideout or Rainbo or some other indie joint, but the Exit always delivers a good time, good people, and lots of leather.
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