As of lately, Toronto has been the breeding grounds for some of the best punk rock bands around. The scene is both a blessing and a curse. There seem to be 1,000+ loud rock bands in this city vying for attention, but when you are able to cut through the static, everyone seems to take notice. This is the case for Toronto four-piece, PUP.
Born out of fierce friendship and a mutual affection for melody, Chicago’s Ratboys – anchored by the partnership of Julia Steiner and Dave Sagan – aims to ‘write songs that tell stories and honor the intimacy of memory,’ according to Steiner. GN, the group’s second full-length album via Topshelf Records, offers a bevy of tales, laments and triumphs, which recount near-tragedies by the train tracks, crippling episodes of loneliness, remembrances of a deceased family pet with freezer burn, and on and on.
Casper Skulls burst forth from the Toronto exurbs in 2015. Described by MTV as a collection of “confrontational art rock that bleeds with sincerity,” and drawing comparisons to luminaries like Television, The Fall (The Toronto Star), Pavement, and Sonic Youth (Noisey), their debut EP, Lips & Skulls(Buzz) attracted immediate attention from audiences in Toronto and up and down the Eastern seaboard. Riding the wave of rising excitement, the band hit the road, hard, touring extensively and sharing stages with acts like Cloud Nothings, Thurston Moore, Suuns, Weaves, The Julie Ruin, Solids, Greys, and Chastity Belt.
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