Thursday, June 13, 2024

10 Victoria-based musicians to add to your playlist in 2023


Let’s face it, it’s January and the days are starting to feel drawn out. 

As many of us are now embracing a period of winter hibernation this is the perfect time to start freshening up your favourite playlist. 

Ranging from groovy funk to Canadian folk music, here are 10 Victoria artists you must add to your playlist for 2023:

Downtown Mischief

Part funk, part jazz, part rhymin’.

This unique menagerie of musicians met through the raw energy of Friday night jam parties in Victoria. 

Incredible live performances and hot vibey studio sessions gave rise to Downtown Mischief; a cast of musical characters, each with their own alter ego, who form a driving, pulsing machine that explodes with life on stage.

Pastel Blank

Formed in 2017, the Victoria-based project is led by Angus Watt. Pulling influence from the jerky rhythms and genre-blending curiosity of Talking Heads as well as the interlocking guitar-work of Canadian post-punk luminaries Women, the music of Pastel Blank cloaks experimentation in pop-minded song structure.

In February 2020, Pastel Blank released Cinema Is Cheap, a standalone single written and recorded in a hazy fervour over the course of one night in a small, airless room at a former band house.


The Dog Indiana

With a sound built as if to contrast the beauty that surrounds them, The Dog Indiana blast their audience with a wall reverb, feedback, and distortion, creating the perfect foil to the natural serenity of Vancouver Island. 

The trio has spent the last four years building a dynamic repertoire of original material, a sound of simmering doom that boils over and explodes into thrashing primordial chaos.

The This

The This is a Rock and Roll group from Victoria. In September 2022 the band released, How Does It Feel When It’s Gone.


Saskatchewan born singer/songwriter Matt Goud, aka Northcote is known for his distinct and intimate voice. His influences include Hardcore Metal, Folk, Americana and Devotional Music. Matt lives in Victoria and also works as a mental health worker and volunteers as an amateur hockey broadcaster.

Ocie Elliot

Ocie Elliott is a Canadian folk music duo from Victoria, whose members are Jon Middleton (from Jon and Roy) and Sierra Lundy.

After racking up over 35 million combined streams and receiving acclaim from American Songwriter, Atwood Magazine, PopSugar, and more, the pair cemented this balance on their 2021 EP, Slow Tide.

Middleton and Lundy began performing together as a duo in 2017, releasing a self-titled EP that year placing their song “Run to You” in a 2019 episode of Grey’s Anatomy, and their song “The Less We Know” in a 2022 episode.

Hush Hush Noise 

Hush Hush Noise is an experimental pop duo from Victoria featuring multi-instrumentalists/vocalists Lily Fawn and Eric Hogg. 

Their intricate arrangements combine organic sounds with electronics to create memorable songs that range from hypnotic lullabies to nightmarish psychedelia.


The Surveyors are just four dads playing loud and fast. “Dadcore”, “Intergenerational punk rock” – Punk rock or Bust.

Their recent releases include What We Had and This Place, released in 2019.

Jon and Roy

Jon and Roy is a Canadian three-piece folk rock and reggae band from Victoria.

Singer-songwriter and guitarist Jon Middleton and percussionist Roy Vizer met at University of Victoria. They formed Jon and Roy, and began performing around Victoria and Vancouver in 2003. 

After eight studio albums, Jon and Roy released Know Your Mind in 2021.

Anglea Verbrugge

Winner of the 2021 JazzTimes Readers’ Poll for Best Female Vocalist. Verbrugge released her 2019 debut on NY-based Gut String Records with a piano trio backing from three veterans of the NYC jazz scene. The album hit number one in jazz on iTunes Canada.

After having three kids, she followed her passion to jazz by assembling a jazz education through self-study and mentorship from top artists. 


Read more

Latest Stories