8 Emerging Canadian Artists You Need to Hear in February 2022

Meet Exclaim!'s latest New Faves, including doom rockers from Winnipeg and Vancouver's hip-hop outsider

BY Exclaim! StaffPublished Feb 1, 2022

The new year is in full swing, and these eight emerging Canadian artists are hoping that 2022 is the moment that cements their rise to the top. Meet this month's New Faves, including doom rockers from Winnipeg and Vancouver's hip-hop outsider, and then listen to them and more rising homegrown talent in our Spotify playlist.

Edmonton, AB
For fans of: Smino, Saba, Dreamville Records

South African-born, Edmonton-based artist ARDN has been fine-tuning his brand of hip-hop and R&B since his 2018 debut Goodwill, arriving at a sound that feels effortlessly relaxed. His dedication to facilitating endless good vibes caught the attention of popular TikTok music curator Axel Tanner, whose post recommending ARDN's 2019 single "Wavin'" has helped droves of new fans discover his breezy, soulful take on rap.
Michael Di Gennaro

Bliss Fields
Toronto, ON
For fans of: Nothing, Alvvays, Tigers Jaw

Formerly known as Iris, Bliss Fields reemerged last year with a new moniker, modified lineup and record deal with Acrobat Unstable. Now, they've kicked off the new year by releasing their debut full-length album, Slowly, Forever. It's a shoegaze record descended from the My Bloody Valentine school, but also with a tendency toward more upbeat yet equally dreamy emo-pop. The band were forced to cancel their tour in January, but expect them to hit the road as soon as they can.
Adam Feibel

Crime Cellar
Winnipeg, MB
For fans of: Chelsea Wolfe, Drab Majesty, Deftones

On Night Lust, Crime Cellar manifest crushing power while reaching for the stars. Melding doom with darkwave and threads of shoegaze, gothic rock, new wave and post-punk, the Winnipeg quartet's debut EP — full of soaring vocals, shimmering notes and towering guitars — is emotive and gripping, brooding and rippling, a bold beginning from veterans of Winnipeg's heavy scenes.
Chris Bryson

Home Front
Edmonton, AB
For fans of: Echo & the Bunnymen, Suicide, New Order

The frigid yet energetic disco-tinged post-punk of Home Front is the kind of music you play loud after breaking into your local abandoned swimming pool: the sound of a free teenage dream, the sound of justice, doubt and uncertainty. The band are busy in the studio with Shout Out Out Out Out's Nik Kozub working on the follow-up to their excellent debut EP, Think of the Lie, which dropped in December 2021. 
Stephan Boissonneault

Myles Lloyd
Montreal, QC
For fans of: The Weeknd, Bryson Tiller

R&B singer Myles Lloyd has stepped up his game with Forever, Yours, out on February 4. The silky production, experimental melodies and emotional lyrics help make his sophomore project a truly mature outing that merits a deep dive. Lloyd's vulnerability and hypnotic vocal tone will surely help him stand out in a province where R&B is finally getting the attention it deserves.
Antoine-Samuel Mauffette Alavo

Toronto, ON
For fans of: Lianne La Havas, Mustafa

With her 2021 debut single "what if i took it off for you?" Nemah Hasan detailed being tokenized by a major company — and thousands of Muslim women followed her cue on TikTok, sharing videos about how wearing a hijab empowers them. The Palestininan-Canadian's airy, string-tinged ballads on heavy matter connect widely, with refined latest offering "dollar signs" assuring that her debut EP will resonate beyond representation.
Megan LaPierre

Lunenburg, NS
For fans of: Grouper, Karen Dalton

Singer-songwriter Roo's measured folk songs have a transfixing, moonlike glow to them. Her EP Blooming, Glooming (Part I), the first instalment of a planned three-part series, is eerie, beautiful and full of big feelings. If you can't wait around for the trilogy's next part, check out Sun-Titled, a collection of equally entrancing tunes released under Roo's given name, Sophie Wonfor.
Laura Stanley

Vancouver, BC
For fans of: Denzel Curry, Backxwash, BROCKHAMPTON

Vancouver hip-hop has been popping off in recent years, and one of the freshest faces making that happen is two-spirit rapper TWiiNWALKER. Grungy beats intensify their gothic horror aesthetic as they growl about keeping their head above the deep, dark waters of hereditary trauma, including poverty and addiction. TWiiNWALKER has long felt like an outsider even among the local music scene, so they're cultivating their own support network, SOLTRiiBE, to amplify the work of other Indigenous creators.
Leslie Ken Chu

Listen to tracks from these and other New Faves on our Spotify playlist:

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