Welcome back to Locally Sourced, our playlist for exclusively the best Ontario (and Canada) has to offer. I’m constantly amazed by the number of incredible songs that roll through my inbox, especially by how many of them are made right in my own province. It’s such a thrill every time an artist sends a song our way, even if we don’t have the capacity to get an article up for everything we hear at this point. I’m working on something right now to show my appreciation for our scene, but in the meantime… I’ve got ten more songs for you to discover. If you want to keep up to date and see the playlist updates before they go live here, you can follow the playlist on Spotify.
Are you a musician in Ontario/Canada? Want to be included in Locally Sourced #14? Email us.
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Delachute – Ax
Delachute has the most interesting story behind their music that I’ve heard, maybe ever? Not being dramatic, it’s just… you’ll see. The music is all inspired by real conversations that the artist had with offenders and their victims/families in prison. They said “love is almost always part of the equation” when it comes to murders, and that the only way they could process everything they’d learned was to turn it into music. You’d think that would manifest itself into more aggressive, sad songs… and yet, here we sit with some unsettling indie vibes. Truly something magical being made out of the worst parts of human behaviour.
Jeen – Don’t Wait
From her start busking in Toronto to singing/songwriting on Brendan Canning’s solo music, to now releasing four of her own albums… Jeen kind of sort of kicks ass at literally everything she does. Her latest single, “Don’t Wait,” has the kind of chorus most artists only dream of writing in their career. It’s catchy, and the moment it starts makes my heart swell, but it’s not catchy to the point that it makes me start to hate it once its played in my head on autopilot for a week straight. Her talent is seemingly endless, and it makes me excited for the next four albums she’s got in store for us.
BAD CHILD – Mannequin
I am so absolutely obsessed with everything BAD CHILD does. Never not once has he released something that doesn’t live up to the bar he’s set. Whether it’s the music itself, the weirdly hypnotizing visuals (see above), or the live show, he’s excelling on all levels at all times. “Mannequin” specifically feels like it takes you through a whole album’s worth of sounds… which is especially shocking when you realize the song doesn’t even come close to three minutes. BAD CHILD is going to be a household name, I’ve never been so sure of anything in my life.
Faiyaz & The Wasted Chances – Dead animals
Punk in its rawest form, Faiyaz & The Wasted Chances are all of the chaos and unbridled energy you could ever desire in your music. I listen to “Dead Animals” and can practically hear someone sticking their foot straight through a floor tom before systematically destroying every piece of gear on the stage. Nothing makes me miss live music quite like punk, and Faiyaz specifically makes it worse because it makes me miss Toronto punk shows. The video… is a wild ride entirely, and reminds me of the scene in Scary Movie where the stoners befriend Ghostface and they inexplicably start hanging out. Not one to miss, I’ll tell ya that.
Steph Copeland & Brigit O’Regan – Gas Light
Steph Copeland & Brigit O’Regan created something so cinematic with “Gas Light”. Watching the music video makes me feel like I’m watching a feature film. There’s so much emotion, so much to take in. I also just love the way they make “gas light” sound like a literal light, taking a new approach to a topic that’s been more widely talked about in recent years. It’s moody and cathartic, while still being subtle enough to enjoy on the days when you don’t want to think about the darkness. The strings take it to that next level that makes it extra magical.
Softcult – Gloomy Girl
I think Softcult is one of the bands I’m most excited about this year. Everything they do makes me feel inspired and motivated to keep growing. “Gloomy Girl” is relatable as a intermittent gloomy girl myself, and their dreamy grunge sound is just about the most enjoyable sound I’ve ever found. Something about this track makes me desperate to see a collab between them and Locket. Softcult’s EP is the one I’m looking forward to most out of literally anything in 2021, I won’t rest until it’s out and I’ve made it my whole personality.
Michael Wilford ft. Chelsea D.E Johnson – Scotch
Half my brain immediately jumped into an episode of Sons of Anarchy, and the other half went to Ice Road Truckers. Michael Wilford & Chelsea D.E Johnson have created some spot-on classic blues rock, and it makes me think… there are genres that come and go throughout the years. Different things are trendy, different bands become the artist to replicate. But nothing ever replaces blues rock. It holds its form and stays as strong as ever, no matter how much time passes. “Scotch” would fit perfectly with blues rock from 20 years ago, and will likely fit with it 20 years down the road as well.
Real Kevin – Tired
Apparently this track from Real Kevin is inspired by 80s alt rock, but it still feels so current that I can’t place it in its influences. It’s garage rock, and it reminds me of being out in the sun, looking over at a friend and just smiling because you’re enjoying the moment. It sounds hopeful. The upbeat guitars and bright sounding snares just keep everything feeling… I don’t know, you know how you felt at 18 when you finished high school and nothing could stop you? Before the weight of the world started to bog you down again? It’s like that.
Dave Monks – Love
As someone who’s lived in Ontario my entire life, of course I have a soft spot for Tokyo Police Club. So seeing that frontman Dave Monks started releasing solo music… I had to give it a listen. It’s exactly as charming and quirky as you’d imagine, based on a career spent being such a wholesome bright light in our scene. The whole video/lyric combo explaining the overwhelming complexity and struggle of being in love makes me laugh out loud (which is something I could use more of these days).
Chad VanGaalen – Nightwaves
Something about the juxtaposition between the vocals and the different layers of the instrumentals makes “Nightwaves” feel like how I feel. Chad VanGaalen naming his new album World’s Most Stressed Out Gardener makes a lot of sense with this energy. So does the album artwork. It’s indie rock but with this chaotic energy… metallic sounds and synths floating between your ears, keeping you on edge and unsure of what’s to come. It feels like I’m immersing myself in it to work through my stress by being consumed by it. It’s oddly…. nice? It leaves me feeling lighter after I’ve listened.