Canadian music in 2021

Having just looked back at Arkells latest album, we’re continuing our year-in-review series by recapping a selection of Canadian music in 2021.

Suzie Ungerleider – Ships
Said The Whale – 99 To The Moon
Chayce Beckham and Lindsay Ell – Without Me
Mother Mother – I Got Love
MacKenzie Porter – Coming Soon To A Bar Near You

Dallas Smith – Hide From A Broken Heart
The Manic Boys and Girls Club – Blacked Out
Bryn – Making Monsters
Like Pacific – Waste of Breath
Calling All Captains – Undone
Olivia Rees – I Got Time
Eddie Davis – Billboards and Barracudas
Rebelle – Kicks
Mylo Quinn – Drift
Agath Christ – Phantom Limbs
The Electric Petals – Wild At Heart
Post-Modern Connection – Folie A Deux
Miesha & The Spanks – Mixed Blood Girls

Suzie Ungerleider – Ships

Two-time Juno award nominee Suzie Ungerleider’s tenth album, My Name is Suzie Ungerleider, is her first under her real name. Her reclamation of her own identity – in terms of not needing to hide behind a character anymore – coincided with the realisation that her stage name Oh Susanna had racist associations via the 1848 song of the same name.

Ships featured on Uncut magazine’s August cover CD.

Said The Whale – 99 To The Moon

Juno award-winning Vancouver band Said The Whale released their new album Dandelion almost 15 years into their acclaimed indie career.

Chayce Beckham and Lindsay Ell – Can’t Do Without Me

The newest American Idol, Chayce Beckham, has teamed up with Canada’s Got Talent host Lindsay Ell for the duet Can’t Do With Out Me. Ell recently presented the Canadian Country Music Awards where she was also nominated for five awards herself (the most nominated female artist).

Mother Mother – I Got Love

Canada’s biggest alternative rockers Mother Mother are all set to release a deluxe version of their album Inside with seven new tracks in January 2022. All being well, they’ll be over here playing their huge-on-TikTok hits here in the UK during their sold-out March 2021.

MacKenzie Porter – Coming Soon To A Bar Near You

MacKenzie Porter made her Grand Ole Opry debut in November 2021, and two weeks later dueted with Dustin Lynch at the Canadian Country Music Awards, where she was nominated for four awards.

Dallas Smith – Hide From A Broken Heart

Dallas Smith was crowned as Entertainer of The Year for the third consecutive year at the 2021 Canadian Country Music Awards. He was nominated for five awards in total and won three, including Top Selling Canadian Album of the Year.

The Manic Boys and Girls Club – Blacked Out

The Manic Boys and Girls Club described their latest single as “a cry for help, disguised as an upbeat dance floor banger.”

Bryn – Making Monsters

Toronto based artist Bryn seeks to explore toxic femininity, anxiety, and hereditary trauma with her new project.

Like Pacific – Waste Of Breath

Jordan Block’s taking no prisoners when describing the kind of person that Like Pacific’s new song is about: “If you treat everyone who serves you at a bar with disrespect and think your god’s gift, you’re wrong. Stop walking all over people at your local spot. You’re washed up, hon!” 

Rebelle – Kicks

Speaking of bartenders, Rebelle was inspired to write Kicks by an experience as a bartender in a small town’s only bar: “There were two people I saw meet, one much older than another, who had a one night stand that led to their lives spiraling out of control. They were having a child yet wanted nothing to do with each other. They vented about their situation at the bar and I remember hearing one of them saying they felt like they were being cloned, which felt so clinical.”

Calling All Captains – Undone

Calling All Captains, a pop-punk/post-hardcore band from just outside Edmonton, hope to help you realise that narcissists lose their power if you walk away and prevail while they eventually expose their charade.

Olivia Rees – I Got Time

Olivia Rees‘ high-quality video for I Got Time was filmed in Beaverton, Ontario. Hands up who else wants that house!

Eddie Davis – Billboards and Barracudas

Eddie Davis was inspired by the big songs and big vocals of 60s and 70s classic rock, which you’ll realise as soon as you hear his voice!

Mylo Quinn – Drift

The high quality video for Drift was filmed in Gelan Canyon, West Kelowna, British Columbia. Both the video and the song explore the impact of substance abuse.

Agath Christ – Phantom Limbs

Agath Christ from Montreal show us another beautiful part of Canada in their video directed by Esther Shpigelman.

The Electric Petals – Wild At Heart

The Electric Petals recorded their debut single at their studio in Temagami, Ontario, and some lush Canadian scenes feature in their lyric video too.

Post-Modern Connection – Folie A Deux

Post-Modern Connection aimed to write a profound yet catchy song. To match, they chose the epic landscape of Kalamalka Lake in Vernon, British Columbia, as the backdrop to the Wes Anderson-inspired video directed by David Vassiliev.

Miesha & The Spanks – Mixed Blood Girls

Miesha & The Spanks channel L7 era riot grrrl punk with a catch af song about a serious subject. As Miesha Louie explained, “it’s (some of) my story as a mixed Secwépemc girl from the East Kootenays. My dark skin and white features left me open to compliments on my “beautiful tan,” and when they found out it wasn’t, I was “too pretty to be an Indian.” From ballet moms to dudes in bars, I’ve heard it all. But it isn’t all skin deep. Being mixed isn’t just about appearances and everyone’s entitled opinion about them. My story follows where I came from and where I currently stand, distanced from family and culture and often pretty isolated because of it.”

“The trauma suffered by my grandmother at residential school would influence the rest of—and in many cases, the end of— my immediate Indigenous family. Not every residential school survivor was resilient. The only family reunions I can remember were funerals.”

Bear in mind that this song came out just a few months before the shocking discovery of the bodies of 215 children at a former residential school site in British Columbia. That’s thought to be just the tip of the iceberg of a system that’s been judged “cultural genocide” which lasted from the 1800s to 1996. As of August 2021, more than 1,300 unmarked graves have been found at five sites. Please take the time to learn about this shameful history.

Now that you’re all caught up on Canadian music, check out our recap of Australian and New Zealand music.