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CBC Radio 3's top 103 songs of 2016

Editorial Staff

It seems like 2016 was the year Canadian indie music threw a little bit of everything our way. Kaytranada came out of nowhere to win the Polaris Music Prize as a first-time nominee, and did it with a debut album to boot. Veterans like John K. Samson, Hidden Cameras and Austra all put out new albums. Brand new artists like Supermoon, L Con, KROY and River Tiber burst onto the scene. Even beloved Winnipeg band Duotang decided to surprise everyone and made a come back after a 12-year hiatus.

It was a great year for music, and, as always, our music programmers faced the difficult task of sorting through and ranking the dazzling array of songs that come across our desks. Without further ado, here are the 103 best Canadian indie songs of 2016:

103. Os Tropies, "Vir Me Amar" from The Soil
102. Your Boy Tony Braxton, "Fall (Girl)" from Adult Contempt
101. Devours, "Jazz By Thor" from Late Bloomer
100. The Cosmic Range, "Love II" from New Latitudes
99. Navet Confit, "Ton Voyage" from EP 7
98. Duotang, "Karma Needs To Come Around" from New Occupation

97. Martha Wainwright, "So Down" from Goodnight City
96. Imaginary Cities. "Set My Heart On Fire" from Leftovers EP
95. Bronswick, "Comme La Mer" from Chasses-Croises EP
94. Twin River, "Antony" from Passing Shade


93. Minotaurs, "Weird Waves" from Weird Waves
92. Slow Down Molasses, "Flowers" from 100% Sunshine
91. Adrian Glynn, "Jumping The Gun" from Morelightthannolight
90. Pet Sun, "Web Of Man" from Pet Sun
89. Tiga, "Planet E" from No Fantasy Required


88. Lanikai, "Motor Inn" from Lanikai
87. Sean Nicholas Savage, "Blow Me Away" from Magnificent Fist
86. Laura Sauvage, "Rubberskin" from Extraordinormal
85. Weird Lines, "Fade In My Heart" from Weird Lines
84. Supermoon, "Witching Hour" from Playland


83. Shotgun Jimmie, "Join The Band" from Field Of Trampolines
82. Escondido, "Heart Is Black" from Walking With A Stranger
81. Ludo Pin, "Les Moyens Du Bord" from Les Moyens Du Bord
80. Elephant Stone, "Manipulator" from Ship Of Fools
79. Jane's Party, "Coming On Strong" from Tunnel Vision
78. Peter Peter, "Bien Reel" from Noir Eden
77. Bankruptcy, "Besmirch My Name" from For The Future
76. MSTRKRFT, "Priceless" from Operator

75. Vallens, "Devour" from Consent
74. Groenland, "Healing Suns" from A Wider Space
73. Marie Davidson, "Naive To The Bone" from Adieux Au Dancefloor
72. The Courtneys, "Silver Velvet" from The Courtneys II


71. Diamond Mind, "Horseless Coach" from Heavy Metal Sunshine
70. The Zolas, "Swooner" from Swooner
69. Casey Mecija, "Gonna Gun" from Psychic Materials
68. Tokyo Police Club, "Not My Girl" from Melon Collie and the Infinite Radness (Part 1)
67. L Con, "Form Of Space" from Moon Milk


66. Mordicus, "Grandville" from Edgar Allan Pop
65. Junior Boys, "Kiss Me All Night" from Kiss Me All Night EP
64. Odonis Odonis, "Game" from Post Plague
63. Repartee, "Dukes" from All Lit Up
62. Mother Mother, "The Drugs" from digital single
61. Paupiere, "Cinq Heures" from Jeunes Instants
60. Skratch Bastid, "Limoncello" (feat. Shad) from digital single


59. Besnard Lakes, "Towers Sent Her To Sheets Of Sound" from A Coliseum Complex Museum
58. Twist, "Soaked" from Spectral
57. Yes We Mystic, "Undertow" from Forgiver
56. Rae Spoon, "Written Across The Sky" from Armour

55. Wintersleep, "Santa Fe" from The Great Detachment
54. Programm, "Jukai" from A Torrid Marriage of Emotion And Logic
53. Hidden Cameras, "The Great Reward" from Home On Native Land
52. Suuns, "Un-No" from Hold/Still
51. Young Rival, "Let Me Go On" from Strange Lights
50. We Are Wolves. "I Don’t Mind" from Wrong
49. The Matinee, "Dancing On Your Grave" from Dancing On Your Grave
48. Tuns, "Mind Over Matter" from Tuns

TUNS || "Mind Over Matter" (Official Music Video) from Max Parr on Vimeo.


47. Monomyth, "Puppet Creek" from Happy Pop Family
46. Wake Island, "Never Entirely There" from Out
45. Swamp Thing, "Wild Things" from Pray To Science
44. Essaie Pas, "Retox" from Demain est une autre nuit
43. Teen Daze, "Cycle" from Themes For Dying Earth
42. River Tiber, "Acid Test" from Indigo


41. AA Wallace, "Shake It Out" from In Alpha Zones
40. The Pack A.D., "So What" from Positive Thinking
39. Louise Burns, "Storms" from Young Mopes
38. Brasstronaut, "Raveshadow" from Brasstronaut
37. July Talk, "Picturing Love" from Touch
36. KROY, "River" from Scavenger

35. Plants And Animals, "No Worries Gonna Find Us" from Waltzed In From The Rumbling
34. Fresh Snow, "Mass Graves/Dance Caves" from One
33. Hannah Georgas, "Evelyn" from For Evelyn
32. Wolf Parade, "Automatic" from EP 4
31. More Or Les, "Cuppa" from Blow The F*ck Up But Stay Humble

30. Marie-Eve Roy, "Golden Bay" from Bleu Nelson
29. Diana, "Confession" from Familiar Touch
28. Dan Mangan, "Race To The Bottom" from Unmake
27. Little Scream, "Love As A Weapon" from Cult Following
26. Preoccupations, "Degraded" from Preoccupations

25. Crystal Castles, "Char" from Amnesty
24. Tasseomancy, "Do Easy" from Do Easy
23. Moonface and Siinai, "Risto’s Riff" from My Best Human Face
22. Islands, "No Milk, No Sugar" from Taste
21. John K Samson, "Postdoc Blues" from Winter Wheat
20. The Luyas, "Says You" from Says You EP

19. Doomsquad, "Pyramids On Mars" from Total Time
18. Snowblink, "How Now" from Returning Current
17. Brendan Canning, "Book It To Fresno" from Home Wrecking Years
16. Tasha The Amazon, "Picasso Leaning" from Die Every Day EP

15. Sam Roberts Band, "If You Want It" from Terraform
14. Destroyer, "My Mystery" from 12” single
13. Basia Bulat, "La La Lie" from Good Advice
12. Weaves, "Birds & Bees" from Weaves
11. Japandroids, "Near to the Wild Heart of Life" from Near to the Wild Heart of Life
10. Tanya Tagaq, "Centre" (feat. Shad) from Retribution

9. Duchess Says, "I Repeat Myself" from Sciences Nouvelles
8. Holy Fuck, "Tom Tom" from Congrats
7. White Lung, "Below" from Paradise

6. Operators, "Cold Light" from Blue Wave
5. Andy Shauf. "Quite Like You" from The Party
4. Austra, "Utopia" from Future Politics

3. Kaytranada, "Weight Off" from 99.9%
2. Black Mountain, "Florian Saucer Attack" from IV
1. A Tribe Called Red, "R.E.D." from We Are The Halluci Nation