Your Guide to Canadian Music Week 2018

By Alex Lupul

Canada’s largest new music festival will be returning to downtown Toronto for its 36th year on May 7 to 13, bringing together more than 4,500 musicians and 160,000 music fans over the course of the event’s nine days.

Featuring more than 900 performances taking place in 60 unique venues, Canadian Music Week offers fans a wide array of options, ranging from some of Canada’s hottest acts, emerging artists and headline talent from all over the world.

The festival will also be home to The Indie Awards, the principal closing even for Canadian Music Week. The awards program will feature appearances and performances from some of Canada’s, and the world’s, most talented emerging artists and fan favourites. Fourteen awards will be up for grabs at the event, covering numerous genres, along with awards for album and group of the year. Current nominees include Alvvays, Gord Downie, Broken Social Scene, among countless worthy recipients.

Coinciding with the diverse range of live-music options, Canadian Music Week also showcases a carefully curated lineup of music-oriented films, special screenings, documentaries and premiers with special appearances and Q&As.

Read about a few of the Canadian Music Week concerts we’re looking forward to below:

May 7th – This Will Destroy You – 10th Anniversary of “S/T”

Texas post-rock band This Will Destroy You is currently touring behind the 10th anniversary of their self-titled album, making a stop in Toronto as part of Canadian Music Week on May 7. The Opera House will serve as the venue, giving fans an opportunity to hear the album’s atmospheric instrumental tracks in its entirety.

May 9th – The Return of Slow

For more than 30 years one of Canada’s most influential punk bands has remained dormant, but the wait is now over. The Phoenix Concert Theatre will host the return of Slow, with fans eager to experience one of the Vancouver band’s fabled live performances. The Dirty Nil, who are currently working on a follow-up to 2016’s “Higher Power,” will serve as support along with fellow Dine Alone label-mate, Single Mothers.

May 10th – DJWindows98

Taking a short break from the Infinite Content Tour, Arcade Fire’s Win Butler will be performing a DJ set as DJWindows98. Arcade Fire’s latest effort, 2017’s “Everything Now” was awarded Album of the Year at the 2018 Juno Awards. Vancouver-based DJ and producer, Felix Cartal, will kick off the night of music at 10:00pm at The Rec Room.

May 11th – Fucked Up

Toronto punk collective and 2009 Polaris Music Prize winners, Fucked Up, will headline the CMW Underground showcase on May 11. Forgoing a traditional concert venue, the band will perform at the decommissioned Lower Bay Station subway platform, which is now used as training ground for new train operators. The showcase will also feature support from Deliluh, E-Saggila and Tyriqueordie.

May 12th – Sloan

Canadian rock veterans, Sloan, are taking to Toronto’s Yonge-Dundas Square for a free performance. The band will be performing on May 12, which coincides with the band’s aptly titled twelfth album “12,” which was released earlier this year. Joining the group is a packed undercard of talent, including L.A. rockers Starcrawler and Death Valley Girls, Lindsay Ontario’s The Kents, and hometown band Tallies.

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