Wavelength Winter Festival 2021 full lineup announced

Wavength Winter Festival 2021

Wavelength Music has announced the lineup to the 2021 edition of the Wavelength Winter Festival, this year taking place online throughout the month of February. A longstanding tradition for the Toronto independent music community, the Wavelength Winter Festival celebrates the anniversary of the founding of the artist-run, non-profit Wavelength Music Series – this year marking 21 years in ‘21. 

This year’s lineup


As expected, the 2021 edition will be a little different, with concerts taking place all online due to COVID-19. Shaking up the usual long-weekend live format, Wavelength Winter Festival 2021 will take the form of four weekly digital shows held on Saturday nights – all free and all ages. Audience members are encouraged to take part in the live chat alongside the livestreamed shows on Wavelength’s YouTube channel. With live music venues still shut down for the foreseeable future, Wavelength hopes to recreate the sense of community found at its long-running concert series in the online sphere, and bring some warmth to this socially distanced winter.

Wavelength has also announced a presenting partnership with Harbourfront Centre’s Kuumba Festival. This year’s Winter Festival lineup spotlights Black Canadian artists who are making invaluable contributions to our music community and helping propel a cultural renaissance within Canada’s arts scenes.

The 100% Canadian line-up features 10 artists spanning the country from coast to coast. Notable lineup highlights include Backxwash – the DIY Montreal metallic rapper/producer who won the 2020 Polaris Music Prize – as well as Canadian composer and songwriting legend Beverly Glenn-Copeland, buzzy Black-fronted punk rockers The OBGMs, renowned indie-pop artist Hannah Georgas (whose latest album was produced by Aaron Dessner of The National), and Polaris-shortlisted Ethiopian/Eritrean jazzy trip-hop phenom, Witch Prophet. As the Wavelength Winter Festival has a long-running reputation of featuring artists long before they break, independent music connoisseurs are going to want to pay attention to sets including the live debut by Pitchfork-acclaimed New Age art-pop trio Shabason, Krgovich & Harris, Ojibway artist Daniel Monkman’s shoegaze-influenced project Zoon, bilingual electro-pop singer Maryze, and psychedelic rock duo Kali Horse, until now known as Kaleidoscope Horse. And late-night TV viewers may recognize Cameroonian-Canadian folk-pop singer/songwriter Clerel, who rocketed to mainstream attention through socially-distanced performances on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert this past fall.

“With 2020 behind us and some hope for a return to normality on the horizon, it’s gratifying to present this Wavelength Winter Festival lineup – all free, online and all-ages – as an offering to help get Toronto, and our extended family of music communities across Canada, through this dark winter,” says Wavelength artistic director Jonny Dovercourt (aka Jonathan Bunce). “It’s especially exciting to partner with Harbourfront Centre to co-present several of these weekly digital concerts as part of their Kuumba celebrations, and champion incredible Black Canadian artists, such as Backxwash, Beverly Glenn-Copeland, The OBGMs, and Witch Prophet.” 

The festival programming will also include online talks and panels, the details for which will be announced in the coming weeks.

For more information, visit WavelengthMusic.ca.

Wavelength Winter Festival 2021 poster


All events free, all ages & streaming live at bit.ly/WL-YOUTUBE

Sunday February 21
HANNAH GEORGAS (Toronto – World-renowned indie-pop artist / Arts & Crafts + Brassland Records) – 9pm
CLEREL (Montreal – Colbert-approved, Cameroon-Canadian folk-pop singer/songwriter) – 8pm

Saturday February 20
BACKXWASH (Montreal – DIY metallic rapper/producer & 2020 Polaris Music Prize winner) – 9pm
ZOON (Hamilton – Indigenous-led, swoony shoegaze noise-pop / Paper Bag Records) – 8pm
MARYZE (Montreal – electro-pop singer, Hot Tramp Management) – 7pm

Friday February 26
THE OBGMs (Toronto – Buzzy Black-fronted punk rockers) – 9pm
KALI HORSE (Toronto – Psychedelic rock duo, fka Kaleidoscope Horse) – 8pm

Saturday February 27
BEVERLY GLENN-COPELAND (Halifax – Canadian composer and songwriting legend) – 9pm
WITCH PROPHET (Toronto – Ethiopian/Eritrean trip-hop phenom, 2020 Polaris Prize short-listed) – 8pm
SHABASON, KRGOVICH & HARRIS (Toronto/Vancouver – Pitchfork-acclaimed New Age art-pop trio) – 7pm