Exclaim! Presents the Class of 2023 Concert Series with Bonnie Trash, Kali Horse, Dilettante

Our annual concert series will bring seven nights of music to Toronto, as well as one-night-only performances in Montreal and Hamilton

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Nov 29, 2022

Through postponements and rescheduling galore, Exclaim!'s annual Class Of concert series persevered to present seven Toronto showcases of the best up-and-coming talent earlier this year — and we're ready to do it all again for 2023.

In collaboration with legendary local promoter Dan Burke, we're bringing you nine incredible nights of music every weekend in January. Class of 2023 is proudly supported by Mary Brown's Chicken.

We're kicking things off in Hamilton on January 6, where concertgoers will be treated to the political post-punk of familiar Class Of faces Sham Family, Riot-grrrl surf punks Bad Crush, the loungey jazz fusion of the Beach Bats and "rock and roll for puffy jacket wearers" courtesy of Žuto. All four will do as the Clash's prophecy foretold and rock the Casbah.

The run of Toronto shows begins the following evening (January 7) at the Horseshoe Tavern. Don't spend too long at the infamous A&W window, or you might miss psych rockers Kali Horse, Montreal's dancey art-rockers Crasher, the artistic stylings of Slash Need's industrial techno or local sad clown KOZA's multilingual alt-rock.

On Friday the 13th (spooky!), post-punk duo CINDER (featuring Robyn Bond of BLANKS), Guelph's haunting drone shoegazers Bonnie Trash, denial-dwelling post-punks not a band and jangle popsters Motorists will entrance the Monarch Tavern. The following night (January 14), Jaguar Sun will bring psychedelic dream pop to Lee's Palace, alongside groovy synthpop from Dilettante, Toronto's self-stylized "favourite sophisti-goth crooner" Theo Vandenhoff and disco-soul astronaut J3M.

Friday, January 20, takes us back to the Monarch for twangy guitar and jazzy piano from Louie Short, the dreamy R&B of Kai Samuels, singer-songwriter Eliza Niemi's deadpan dispatches and Alyson McNamara's sleepy dream-folk. That same night, in Montreal, the city's own Canadiana ambassadors Steel Saddle, tight-beat garage pop provocateurs the Wesleys, vintage funk revivalist Mitch Davis and thrumming alt-country outfit Bule will take over L'Escogriffe Bar.

Back in Toronto, MAX (featuring Dave Monks of Tokyo Police Club and Anyway Gang) will be getting the garage party started at the Horseshoe with electro-glam powerhouse NYSSA, Leena Rodriguez's punchy MBG project and the throwback power pop of Lenny Bull on Saturday, January 21.

It's a doubleheader for our final weekend: the Monarch hosts noisy hick children Hobby with emo-tinged alt-rockers Heavy Head, '70s folk popsters Robinson Kirby and the return of Steel Saddle, riding again on January 27. Then, Saturday (January 28) sees Sam Abbygail's angsty rock project Rusholme, East Coast-hailing Loviet's gutsy guitar-driven pop, the mid-tempo atmospherics of Velvet Beach and eccentric melodists Glutenhead cap off the series.

Tickets for the Class of 2023 concert series, in partnership with the City of Toronto's Music Office, will be on sale in the coming weeks via Showclix. Check out the Facebook event links below, and stay tuned to get to know this year's grads a little better ahead of the shows.

Exclaim!'s Class of 2023:

01/06 Sham Family / Bad Crush / the Beach Bats / Žuto - The Casbah
01/07 Kali Horse / Crasher / Slash Need / KOZA - Horseshoe Tavern
01/13 CINDER / Bonnie Trash / not a band / Motorists - Monarch Tavern
01/14 Jaguar Sun / Dilettante / Theo Vandenhoff / J3M - Lee's Palace
01/20 Louie Short / Kai Samuels / Eliza Niemi / Alyson McNamara - Monarch Tavern
01/20 Steel Saddle / the Wesleys / Mitch Davis / Bule - L'Escogriffe Bar
01/21 MAX feat. Dave Monks / NYSSA / MBG / Lenny Bull - Horseshoe Tavern
01/27 Hobby / Steel Saddle / Heavy Head / Robinson Kirby - Monarch Tavern
01/28 Rusholme / Loviet / Velvet Beach / Glutenhead - Monarch Tavern

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