NXNE part I: Bands I’ve Actually Heard Of

This week, it begins! Not just Toronto’s NXNE festival, but the city’s festival season as a whole. I once overheard someone downtown say “yeah between NXNE and Caribana the quality of life around here goes down so much.”

Excuse me? How are free concerts and street parties negative factors? That person would probably be great friends with whoever I saw tweet last year, concerning NXNE’s headlining event of Raekwon & Ghostface Killah at Yonge Dundas Square, something to the effect of “Free Wu-Tang Clan concert in the middle of downtown Toronto? Oh, *that’s* a great idea… :-/”

Yes. Yes, it is a great idea. Wu-Tang is for the children.

Back to the present though. I skimmed through the handy-dandy NXNE app and compiled my ideal schedule if I had teleporting and/or self-cloning abilities. Not surprisingly, a vast majority of the names I recognized were local acts.

Pictured artists are in bold, and colour-coded for broad big-box-store genre definition, from hip-hop/rap/grime/soul (which I always wish there was more of) to indie/rock/punk/metal (which there’s always an abundance of) and DJ/electronic (which I would have expected more of, but maybe EDM’s just too mainstream now).

Wednesday, June 12:

  • Vibonics @ Measure, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • Jelly Too Fly @ Nocturne, 11:35PM – 11:45PM
  • Gentleman Reg @ Rivoli, 12:00AM – 1:00AM
  • The Antiheroes @ Wrongbar, 12:15AM – 12:40AM

Thursday, June 13:

  • The Flatliners @ Yong Dundas Square, 7:00PM – 7:40PM
  • Kiz & Legin @ Bovine Sex Club, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • Mesa Mesa @ May, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • PUP @ Arts & Crafts Pop-Up, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • Teen Tits Wild Wives @ Parts & Labour, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • Dan Deacon @ Horseshoe Tavern, 12:00AM – 1:00AM
  • The Effens @ Rancho Relaxo, 12:00AM – 1:00AM
  • Pretty Mouth @ Parts & Labour, 1:00AM – 2:00AM
  • abstract Random @ May, 1:00AM – 2:00AM

Friday, June 14:

  • BizZarh @ Wrongbar, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • John Milner, You’re So Boss @ Handlebar, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • ALVVAYS @ Silver Dollar Room, 10:00PM – 11:00PM
  • Buke & Gase @ Horseshoe Tavern, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • FLAG @ The Opera House, 12:00AM – 1:00AM

Saturday, June 15:

  • Kiz & Legin @ Redpath Harbourfront, 3:00PM – 4:00PM
  • Red Slam @ May, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • The BB Guns @ Lee’s Palace, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • Tre Mission @ Wrongbar, 9:00PM – 10:00PM
  • Little Sun @ Monarch Tavern, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • PKEW PKEW PKEW (gunshots) @ Rancho Relaxo, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • Rich Kidd @ Wrongbar, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • The FranDiscos @ Johnny Jackson, 11:00PM – 12:00AM
  • The Death Set @ Lee’s Palace, 12:00AM – 1:00AM
  • Fucked Up @ Horseshoe Tavern, 1:00AM – 2:00AM
  • Joey Bada$$ @ Wrongbar, 1:00AM – 2:00AM
  • Ryan Hemsworth @ BLK BOX, 1:00AM – 2:00AM
  • Greys @ The Garrison, 3:00AM – 4:00AM

Sunday, June 16:


Exam-like question to encourage reader engagement:

Is the bulk of NXNE talent being already based in Toronto a good sign for the local scene, or a bad sign for the festival? Explain your answer!


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