Ruth B, MorMor, Snotty Nose Rez Kids and more: songs you need to hear this week
Six hot new Canadian tracks to add to your playlist right now.
Here at CBC Music, we're always on high alert for new songs by Canadian artists.
This week, we're listening to new tracks from Ruth B, MorMor, Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Haviah Mighty feat. Sean Leon, Villages, and Cadence Weapon with DJ Shub. Scroll down to find out why you need to hear them, too.
What new Canadian tunes are you currently obsessed with? Share them with us on Twitter @CBCMusic.
Toronto musician MorMor made a big impression last year with his debut EP, Heaven's Only Wishful, which received international acclaim from Pitchfork, NPR and the Fader. This year, the dreamy psych-pop artist is hitting the road, touring Europe, the U.S. and Canada, and just ahead of its kick-off date, he has released a brand new song called "Outside." The track, which speaks to a feeling of isolation, feels perfectly bottled up. MorMor is couched somewhere between the song's floating acoustic riffs, hovering synths and steady drum beat, peering out as he sings, "The sky won't hold light, it leaves me blind/ how can I find the sun?" "Outside" can easily drown in its own melancholy but MorMor delivers his words with an urgency and lightness that gives listeners a glimmer of hope. If anything, we can all commiserate over our alienation together.
— Melody Lau
'Don't Disappoint Me,' Ruth B
In a statement on Instagram, Ruth B. said that she's been "living life and finding the music in it." This storyteller's latest chapter, Maybe I'll Find You Again, is just that: an exploration of painful and joyous moments alike. The first track off of the project, "Don't Disappoint Me," has a timeless feel, from the soft touch of static to the sweet harmonies. Whether it's insidious breadcrumbing or straight-up ghosting, commitment aversion in romantic relationships is unfortunately common. The singer-songwriter refuses to accept this situation, insisting, "If it's not what you want, just let me know/ but don't disappoint me, promise you won't."
— Natasha Ramoutar
'Superhero,' Cadence Weapon & DJ Shub
On Cadence Weapon's 2018 self-titled album, rapper Rollie Pemberton opened up his process to include some of Canada's best current-day beatmakers: Kaytranada, Harrison, FrancisGotHeat and Jacques Greene. On Pemberton's latest track, "Superhero," he continues his collaborative streak by teaming up with former A Tribe Called Red member DJ Shub. The track, as Pemberton explains in a press release, aims to hone "the kind of energy that makes you want to lift a car over your head!" And it delivers, sending a lightning jolt to the senses like Peter Parker being bitten by a radioactive spider. DJ Shub's big, boisterous beats serve as springboards for Pemberton as he boom, zap, pows through the track like a superpowered being. We sure hope there are more adventures of Cadence Weapon and DJ Shub, a dynamic duo that has completely captured our imagination. — ML
'Creator Made an Animal,' Snotty Nose Rez Kids feat. Boslen
From their Polaris Music Prize and Juno Award nominations to their numerous tour dates, Snotty Nose Rez Kids have been moving steadily upward and show no signs of slowing down. Hailing from the Haisla Nation, Darren "Young D" Metz and Quinton "Yung Trybez" Nyce are defiant and audacious with their approach to music. Their explosive new single, "Creator Made an Animal," is the first track to be released from their forthcoming album, Trapline. In a press release, the group stated that the song "is our way of paying homage to the place that we call home as our spirits awaken, and our people rise up." "Creator Made an Animal" acknowledges and reveres the past, while channelling that energy for the future generation. Aggressive and assertive, "Creator Made an Animal" is a powerful protest anthem. — NR
'Waves,' Haviah Mighty feat. Sean Leon
Toronto rapper Haviah Mighty has been gradually climbing the ranks over the past few years, but 2019 is destined to be her breakthrough moment. In 2017, she released her debut album, Flower City, which was followed up by an incredible album with her group the Sorority last year. Then, she was announced as one of the 2018/2019 Allan Slaight Juno Master Class winners, earning her access to a crucial artist development program. All of these major stepping stones will lead to her sophomore release, 13th Floor, out May 10. "Waves" is her latest single, featuring fellow Toronto artist Sean Leon, and it's a dynamic showcase for Mighty's confident bars ("My DNA is poetic," she spits with aim and precision). The track features a low baritone voice repeating the phrase, "You must think I'm fly." For Mighty, there's no question, no pleading for approval — she is fly, that's an indisputable fact. — ML
'Maggie of the Cove,' Villages
You may recognize Halifax's Villages as the artists also known as Mardeen, but in place of high-energy pop-rock the same members are leaning on their Celtic and Cape Breton roots for a more traditional sound. The band, which originally wrote Mo Kenney's 2014 hit "Telephones," consists of Matt and Travis Ellis, Archie Rankin and Jon Pearo, and on March 22 they released their self-titled debut album: eight original songs that move that tradition forward in place of pandering to it. The album's second single, "Maggie of the Cove," assures that foot-stomping is in Villages' DNA, with vocals and instrumentation that lean more Fleet Foxes than Rankin Family. The single comes with a delightful video of the band members hanging out with farm animals, and it's impossible to tell who's having the most fun (the line "now he saw me saw her/ but I saw her saw me" is sung while Rankin and a llama are making eyes at each other). Matching hairdos abound. Catches Villages on tour now.
— Holly Gordon