Canadian Music Week has many things for many different types of music fans. Those who love indie rock, roots, or electronic dance music will find their musical preferences well represented. Even alternative and hard-rock showcases are relatively plentiful. But for fans of more aggressive music—namely heavy metal, hardcore, and punk (when not watered down with a heavy dose of pop)—the pickings are considerably slimmer.
Even so, thanks to some touring packages becoming a part of CMW and a few small-but-mighty showcases, headbangers and moshers alike will have some reason to attend this year’s festival.
Wednesday, March 20, doors at 6 p.m.
The Opera House (735 Queen Street East)
Swedish melodic death-metal veterans Soilwork headline CMW’s first major metal event. Also on the bill is legendary Nevermore guitarist Jeff Loomis, who will doubtless provide metal fans with some blistering solo work. Supporting acts Bonded by Blood and Hatchet will supply some thrash-metal intensity early on, while hardworking epic-metal regulars Blackguard will bring a touch of the fantastical.
Coheed and Cambria
Thursday, March 21, 9:45 p.m.
Sound Academy (11 Polson Street)
For those who like it rough, there’s always progressive rock and post-hardcore giant Coheed and Cambria. Taken together, all the band’s albums form a unified science-fiction epic, written by vocalist Claudio Sanchez. Coheed is still perhaps best known for “Welcome Home,” from the album Good Apollo, I’m Burning Star, which was included in the original Rock Band video game. Also playing at this show are punk acts Mockingbird Wish Me Luck and A Place to Bury Strangers.
Protest the Hero
Friday, March 22, 9:30 p.m.
The Hoxton (69 Bathurst Street)
While CMW is light on pure metal acts, there are several lineups that include metal, punk, and hardcore influences, one example being Protest the Hero’s headlining show. The bill has plenty of metallic weight and crunch surrounding a hard-rock core. Punk, metal, and metalcore support will be provided by Waster, and Machines.
As I Lay Dying
Saturday, March 23, doors at 6 p.m.
Sound Academy (11 Polson Street)
Metalcore heavyweights As I Lay Dying will be playing Sound Academy, with support from The Devil Wears Prada, For Today, and mathcore band The Chariot.
Long Winter Festival, Hosted by Fucked Up
Saturday, March 23, doors at 8 p.m.
The Great Hall (1087 Queen Street West)
Beloved Toronto hardcore-punk darlings Fucked Up will be hosting the most recent edition of their winter-long multi-arts festival, Long Winter. The musical lineup includes hardcore warriors Burning Love. In addition to the music, the event will feature art installations, film screenings, and even video games.
Canadian Music Festival Closing Party
Sunday, March 24, doors at 8:30 p.m.
Bovine Sex Club (542 Queen Street West)
By this point in the week, a normal person would have succumbed to sheer exhaustion and ear fatigue, but for those metal fans still hungry for more, a metal showcase starts off the festival’s closing party. Canadian thrash metallers Razorwire, Untimely Demise, and and Mastery will lay waste to the crowd before the show switches gears. A set defined by house music and EDM will take over into the small hours.
This article originally misstated the name of the band Mockingbird Wish Me Luck.
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