The music festival to kick-off all music festivals, Canadian Music Week is celebrating its 35th birthday this year and the lineup is full of exciting international acts and promising Toronto bands.
With hundreds of bands playing multiple venues across the city over April 18th-23rd, it can be a daunting task to pick which shows to attend. That’s why we’ve compiled our best bets for CMW, so you can make the most of this years festivities. Check out the entire schedule & lineup here.
Tuesday, April 18th
The Honest Heart Collective | Adelaide Hall | Event Info
Hailing from Thunder Bay, Ontario, this collective rock group packs a punch and put on one hell of an energetic live show. Catch them at Adelaide Hall with Texas King.
Bleeker | MOD Club | Event Info
Bleeker are joined by Toronto locals Modern Space and The Kents, kicking off CMW with a lively show at MOD Club.
Wednesday, April 19th
Indies with Indie88 | The Phoenix | Event Info
Our most anticipated event of CMW is the Indies with Indie88, Hollerado and The Wooden Sky are set to headline the awards show, with special performances by Dan Mangan and Repartee.
NoBro & Mimico | Baby G | Event Info
It’s an all-caps fest as Montreal doom-pop garage punks NOBRO bring their uncompromising yet melodic sounds to the Baby G. They’re joined by Toronto’s own post-punk, psychedelic up and comers MIMICO.
Danko Jones | Velvet Underground | Event Info
Let loose at Canadian rock vet, Danko Jones’ set at the Velvet Underground Wednesday night. Jones and his band are touring their recent album Wild Cat.
Charlotte Day Wilson | Mod Club | Event Info
Catch one of Toronto’s most promising young artists, Charlotte Day Wilson, who will bring her sultry voice and lush tones to MOD Club.
Colleen Green & The Wedding Present | Horseshoe Tavern | Event Info
Colleen Green and The Wedding Present: Brit pop veterans The Wedding Present will flex their eclectic sounds at the Horseshoe, splitting the bill with the smooth, power-pop stylings of Colleen Green.
The Balconies & Ivory Hours | Adelaide Hall | Event Info
Ottawa-born rock trio bring the noise to Adelaide Hall for what will be a packed show, sharing the stage with Toronto’s Modern Space and Ivory Hours.
Good Charlotte | Danforth Music Hall | Event Info
Relive your formative years singing “The Anthem” as the beloved pop-punk group Good Charlotte makes their grand return at the Danforth Music Hall Wednesday night.
Thursday, April 20th
Billy Moon and Sebadoh | Horseshoe Tavern | Event Info
90s indie rock pioneers Sebadoh return to Toronto for CMW. Give your old Bakesale t-shirt a wash and ready yourself for some lo-fi perfection courtesy of Lou Barlow and Co. Sebadoh will pe playing with Hamilton bad-boy Billy Moon, who will be concluding his month-long residency at the Horseshoe.
Matt Mays | Lee’s Palace | Event Info
Hailing from the east coast, Matt Mays started off as a member of Canadian indie band The Guthries and later fronted his own group, Matt Mays & El Torpedo. You might recognize MM&ET’s hit “Cocaine Cowgirl,” which blew up on Canadian radio in 2005.
Tim Darcy | Baby G | Event Info
After fronting Montreal band Ought, Tim Darcy decided to branch off on his own solo project, diverting from Ought’s post-punk aura and channels his folk-indie side. Definitely not your typical Saturday night goer, Darcy’s CMW set should bring all the emotional subtleties of a low key night in.
Tanya Tagaq & Whitehorse | Phoenix Concert Theatre | Event Info
This is surely not a show to miss. Renowned throat singer Tanya Tagaq shares the stage with Hamilton-based husband-and-wife band Whitehorse at the Phoenix Theatre for a very special night.
Featurette | Adelaide Hall | Event Info
Get your fix of dreamy, synth-pop as Toronto indie pop duo Featurette take over Adelaide Hall Thursday night.
Friday, April 21st
Wolf Parade | Great Hall | Event Info
Having regrouped last year, Wolf Parade is set to take over the Great Hall for an intimate showcase Friday night.
The Beaches | Horseshoe Tavern | Event Info
The Beaches are not-so-quietly rising to become one of Toronto’s most promising indie-rock bands. Sounding like The Strokes meets The White Stripes meets Metric, be prepared for maximum shredding.
Greys | Garrison | Event Info
Truly one of the most buzz-worthy rock bands in Toronto. If you haven’t heard Greys name by now, make sure you head to the Garrison to hear their Post-hardcore and grunge stylings, that put them on the map alongside METZ and Fucked Up.
Ascot Royals | Rivoli | Event Info
Toronto, Ontario-based rock quintet Ascot Royals play Toronto in April. Check out their Collective Arts Black Box performance of “New Skin” below.
Dandy Warhols | Lee’s Palace | Event Info
Catch beloved Portland indie rockers play all their hits like “Bohemian Like You” and “We Used To Be Friends” at Lee’s Palace at the Dine Alone Showcase.
Saturday, April 22nd
Weaves | Lee’s Palace | Event Info
It all started in a crummy Chinatown apartment. From voice memos recorded in bathrooms, Weaves have created a name for themselves worldwide. Don’t miss their Canadian Music Week performance with Pony, Vallens and more.
Sun K | Dakota Tavern | Event Info
If you need more gritty rock ‘n’ roll and blues in your life, look no further than Sunk K. Make sure you head to Dakota Tavern Saturday to catch this Toronto band get it heated.
Handsome Savages | Sneaky Dee’s | Event Info
Grab a cheap beer and watch three-piece garage rock group alongside Parasona and Flying Buttress at Sneaky Dee’s.
Earl Sweatshirt | Phoenix Concert Theatre | Event Info
At only 23 years old, Earl Sweatshirt has more musical feats than some rappers twice his age. He’s worked alongside artists such as Frank Ocean, Pharrell and Tyler, the Creator — and now he’s in town to perform for you. Catch Earl Sweatshirt at the Phoenix Saturday night.
Sunday, April 23rd
Explosions in the Sky | Rebel | Event Info
Feel all the feelings as Explosions in the Sky bring their post-rock goodness to REBEL Sunday night.
Fred Penner | Lula Lounge | Event Info
Put a nice happy bow on the end of Canadian Music Week, as the beloved children’s music performer and Juno-winning artist Fred Penner takes over the stage at Lula Lounge for a truly special evening.
Make sure to check out our handy guide to CMW for tips on getting around the city, where to eat, and where to find bars offering extended last call all week long.