Meet Exclaim!'s Class of 2024: Cam Kahin, the High Loves, Nicolette & the Nobodies, WEBB

Photos (clockwise from top left): the High Loves by Isa Visuals, Cam Kahin by Jack Alexander, Nicolette & the Nobodies by Dzesika Devic, WEBB by @ss_dd_qq

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Jan 23, 2024

The jury’s still out on whether the Monarch Tavern has yet recovered from being stuffed to the gills for Sunnsetter and co. on Friday (January 19) and the walls being shaken by La Sécurité’s performance on (January 20). I’m not sure that I’ve yet recovered. But here we are, coming into our final week of the Class of 2024, proudly supported by Mary Brown’s Chicken.

And we’re going out with a bang: emo-tinged guitar pop wunderkind Cam Kahin leads the charge at Nineteen Seventy Eight on Friday (January 26), followed by the yacht rock-adjacent buoyancy of the High Loves rocking the boat at Longboat Hall on Saturday (January 27).

January 26: Nineteen Seventy Eight

Cam Kahin

Dine Alone Records knew what they were doing when they snapped up Toronto’s Cam Kahin in the fall of 2022. Since then, the singer-songwriter/producer has released his debut EP, last year’s WHEN IT’S ALL OVER, for the local indie mecca and remained remarkably consistent in his output of spiritedly grungy, guitar-driven music that adjectives genuinely fall short in conveying. As per his own description, it’s “something you haven’t heard.” You’re certainly going to want to hear it at Nineteen Seventy Eight on Friday (January 26), functioning as the same-day release party for Kahin’s next single “stay with me," which he's calling his best work to date.


Long before the Beaches ever blamed Brett, they name-checked Emmett Webb on Future Lovers single "Let's Go." The Goodbye Honolulu guitarist's solo project, the eponymous WEBB, really got its start in 2023, and he's looking forward to letting it blossom this year — as well as watching his pals and bandmates in projects like fellow Class Of grads Jay Feelbender and Thermal continue to shred. "I’m really proud to witness everyone continuously creating and releasing their art their way," he tells Exclaim!, "and I honestly can’t wait to see what 2024 holds for everyone."

Sun Junkies

Fast, loud, angry and stinky — what you see is what you get (and smell) with self-proclaimed industry plants, Sun Junkies. Decidedly not in Brantford, ON, anymore, the garage rockers are already working on the follow-up to their 2023 album, Parachuting, which they’re excited to start demoing and recording amid another year of growth for the GTA’s DIY scene. “While we don’t pretend to understand the beast that is the music industry on a grand scale, we know things are pretty fun here on the ground floor,” they say. “And we’re going to keep working our dumb jobs so we can keep destroying our bodies and minds in the name of good fun.”

Shiv and the Carvers

In 2024, Shiv and the Carvers plan on “getting around like sluts.” (Can I get an amen?) The first stop on their walkabout is Nineteen Seventy Eight — a.k.a. the warehouse for vintage clothing shop EXPO — which they’re especially excited for because, “as skaters, we’ll take any opportunity to play a gig in a bowl!” according to frontperson Shiv Scott, who skates quad with lead guitarist Nicole Maxwell (Slug), while bassist Annie Rowlinson (Dilly Dally) is “a sick skateboarder.” Despite their enfant terrible brand of punk, Scott is another proponent of the butt rock revival La Sécurité’s Kenny Smith (and the Exclaim! staff) have been championing for the year to come.

January 27: Longboat Hall

The High Loves

It might sound contradictory, but trust me: you’re going to want to have both your milkshakes and hot pants ready for when the High Loves descend upon Longboat Hall this Saturday (January 27). As frontperson Noah Monckton puts it, their effortlessly catchy sound is like “going to a disco in a ‘50s diner.” The band have big plans for the year ahead, including releasing not one but two new EPs, as well as playing a whole lot of shows — and the timing couldn’t be better: “Most small indie shows I’ve attended recently have been packed,” says Monckton, “and I’m really getting the sense that people are more and more finding the magic of live music and connecting with new artists.”

Nicolette & the Nobodies

“A national editorial curated playlist of a bunch of artists I can get excited about.” That’s how Nicolette & the Nobodies’ Nicolette Hoang describes the Class of 2024 concert series, and it couldn't be more apt. She adds, “I feel like everyone there will have a similar mentality so I'm expecting the shows to be really exciting.” The Guelph-based bandleader and her team dwell in “a kind of melancholic, soul-drenched and rock-tinged country and western” reminiscent of the genre’s ‘60s/‘70s heyday — but for 2024, Hoang sees “shroom country” sweeping the nation. If that’s anything like the hazy high their dusky melodies evoke, then count me in.

Emma Beckett

Emma Beckett is no stranger to Longboat Hall: they performed there in 2018, opening for Alice Phoebe Lou. “I have a probably actually not-funny bit about how the venue is a converted YMCA gym that I’d love to subject the crowd to,” they tell Exclaim! In addition to some fun historical architectural facts, Beckett is bringing their unique brand of perfectionist pop music by an overachiever “pretending they’re edgier than they actually are.” They’re also hoping to compile some of these tunes into an EP for release later in the year — they just have to figure out the best blanket fort vocal-recording setup first.

Fighting Chance

Much like Asher Roth, Fighting Chance love college! Radio rock, that is. Fittingly, Fighting Chance were initially founded in Montreal for a university battle of the bands back in 2017 and didn't let only coming in fourth place stop them from seizing the underdog momentum of the moment. They've since perfected their signature sound with '70s power pop influences to create a blend that their Spotify bio describes as "Weezer meets Wings, or Paul Simon goes Pavement." They also notably have a song about cauliflower, which has instilled my trust in them to kick things off on a high note at Longboat faster than anything.

Get more information about this week's final (!) shows of the Class of 2024 concert series — presented in partnership with the City of Toronto's Music Office — at the Facebook event links. Advance tickets are on sale now via Showclix.

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