Best Canadian Indie Rock Bands :: The portal of the largest rankings on the Internet!

The world has some very well-known and talented musicians from all over the place, including our beloved Canada. From the likes of Shania Twain to Nickelback, there have been a number of very influential artists coming from Canada including in the indie rock section of the music industry. We’ve put together a list of the current best indie rock bands from Canada and ranked them from the best. Despite this list being from the best, none of the artists and bands is the “worst” as they’re the top 10 bests in Canada. Our ranking is done through research and is biased, however, all of the artists listed on this list are classed as some of the best indie rock artists of all time and are still very good at what they do.

The 10 Best Canadian Indie Rock Bands and Artists

Indie Rock Band / Artist
1 Broken Social Scene Possibly the biggest and best indie rock bands of all time have got to be the Canadian band Broken Social Scene. Ever since their rise to fame in 1999, the group have had as little as 6 band members to as many as 19, however, Brendan Canning and Kevin Drew originally formed it. The band’s sound combines a lot of different elements of music to create a unique and beautiful sound that impresses all of the music critiques who listen to them. There are many instruments within the group, from the woodwind instruments to violins, and even horns which is why their sound is very different to all the other music you hear on the radio or in the charts. Despite being different to other artists out there, they have had a lot of success as an indie rock band and continue to sell out shows throughout Canada and the world. During their active music career, they have released 5, studio albums for various different record labels as well as 4 EP’s. Many of their singles have reached the charts in the US and the UK as well as Canada and all around the world, these singles include; ‘Cause = Time’, ‘7/4 (Shoreline)’, and ‘Halfway Home’.

If you’re interested in finding out more information about the Broken Social Scene, it’s members or current singles, then you can see their official website here:
2 Alanis Morrissette One of the biggest female artists in the Indie rock genre is definitely Alanis Morrissette. After starting out as a more dance-pop artist at the start of her career, she later turned to rock releasing her 1995 album ‘Jagged Little Pill’ and ever since has never looked back. Known for her songwriting as well as singing, Alanis is one of the only female rock artists to release multi albums that have been in the top charts. She is also a very talented musician as well as a singer as she plays the keyboard, guitar and the harmonica, this is shown in some of her music. After selling over 70 million records worldwide, she’s gone on to be a lot more successful than she could ever imagine. The talent of this rock chick doesn’t stop there either, she has also been in a number of films and TV programmes such as ‘Dogma’ and ‘Sex in the City’. Alanis Morrissette has headlined 15 tours, opened for 2 tours, and co-headlined 3 tours throughout her career, as well as being called the “Queen of alternative-rock” by the Rolling Stone magazine. Some of her most popular songs include; ‘Ironic’, ‘Hands Clean’, and ‘Thank U’.

If you’re interested in all the official information about Alanis Morrissette and any upcoming updates, then you can see her website here:
3 Arcade Fire Another well-loved Canadian indie rock band is formed of husband, wife and brothers band, Arcade Fire. The band consists of 6 members who are related (some by blood and other by marriage), however, there are also a few other unrelated members that often tour with the band when they do shows. They first rose to fame in 2004 when their debut album ‘Funeral’ caught the eye of the public and ever since they have been loved by many fans and music artists alike. They have been nominated for Grammys and won one, they have also won other awards including a Brit Award for their album in 2011. They are described as an indie rock band as they often put unusual sounds and synths into their songs, however, they can also be described as baroque pop or dance-rock. Since some of their more popular albums do take the indie rock genre more seriously they tend to stick with this sound when they’re touring. The band has received nominations for various Grammys and they have been named as a shortlist for Polaris Music Prize (three times in 2007, 2011, and 2014 for their albums).

If you want to find out more information about Arcade Fire or what they’re currently doing, then you can see their website here:
4 Tegan and Sara These twin sisters started performing in 1995 and gained mainstream fame in 2007 with their album. Both girls are singers, instrumentalists and song-writers which means that all of their songs are played and sang by them together and separately. Throughout their career, they have released around 8 studio alsbums and various EP’s during the earlier part of their career. After growing up in Alberta in Canada, the pair decided to come together and create the band after they discovered their love and passion to make music. They have since gone on to win different awards and nominations including a Grammy nomination in 2013. When describing their sound, the girls often explain say their main inspirations were the likes of superstar bands Nirvana and Green Day. Other bands they say influenced their sound include; Taylor Swift, Smashing Pumpkins and Dinosaur Jr. The duo has toured a lot during their time active in music including when the graduated high school. They have also toured with the likes of Bryan Adams, The Black Keys, and Neil Young. They’re also notable for talking about their childhood and experiences on stage between their sets.

More information on their current tour, newest album, and history is on their official website which you can access here:
5 The New Pornographers Formed in 1997, the band of eight members has gone on to achieve a lot of success in the indie rock band industry. In their career, they have released 7 studio albums which have reached the top charts many times. They also have a number of live albums and over 15 singles that have done extremely well. Their mainstream success started when the band released their first studio album in 2000 under the name ‘Mass Romantic’ for the record label Mint. They have since changed their record label to one called Concord Music Group in which they released their 2017 album. Some of their most well-known songs include; ‘High Ticket Attraction’, ‘Champions of Red Wine’, and ‘Crash Years’. As well as indie rock (which the band mainly associates themselves with) they have also been described as power pop and post-punk revival.

For everything related to The New Pornographers including their tours, albums, and upcoming events, you can see their official website here:
6 Nickelback Since their formation in 1995 in Alberta, Canada, they have become one of the biggest indie rock bands of all time. Despite their sound often being referred to as post-grunge or pop-rock, they mainly associate themselves with the alternative rock genre. Consisting of four members; Daniel Adair, Ryan Peake, Chad Kroeger, and Mike Kroeger, they are one of the most commercially successful Canadian bands of all time. They have sold over 50 million albums throughout the world and they have been since ranked in the top 15 best-selling artists of all time. They are successful all over the world and tour regularly to countries such as the UK, US and even some of Asia. They have released 9 studio albums and have won multiple awards for them including SOCAN awards and have been nominated for other big music awards throughout their active music career. Some of their most popular songs are still played regularly on the radio despite being over 10 years old, they’re most popular songs include; ‘Rockstar’, ‘How You Remind Me’, and ‘Photography’. Nickelback’s most popular album of all time is called ‘All the Right Reasons’ and was released in 2005, this album includes singles that reached as high as the top 5 and 10 in the Billboard Hot 100 when they were released.

If you want more information about Nickelback and their tours or upcoming albums then you can see their official website here:
7 Kandle Osbourne After formerly being apart of The Blue Violets with her friend and sister, Kandle decided to pursue her solo career in 2011 and released her self-titled debut EP in 2012. She is the daughter of 54-40 frontman Neil Osbourne and was born in 1990. Despite being a great song-writer and excellent musician, Kandle also plays the guitar. Since her debut, she has been signed to the record label Sleepless Records and has currently only released 2 albums. However, she did spend much of 2014 touring around Europe and America which meant that a lot of her time was spent performing rather than making music. She has also worked with other musicians such as Apashe and Sam Goldberg Jr. Despite suffering from stage fright when she was younger, she has since conquered her fears and started performing all over the world.

For all the official information related to Kandle and her music, albums, and upcoming tours, you can see her website here:
8 Dog Day The indie rock Canadian duo named Dog Day consists of a husband and wife but they have had multiple other musicians join them on their musical journey during their career. Whilst some of the guest musicians have joined for tours, others have been apart of the album making process. Since becoming musically active in 2004, the duo has released 4 albums, 3 EP’s and 2 singles which have done well in the music top charts. They’re more famously known for their third album which was released in 2011 on their own record label under the name Fundog. Their fourth album featured guest musicians Dale Fahey, Michael Cantano, and Spidle. A lot of the duo’s music is influenced by other famous indie rock bands and aims to have a unique yet upbeat style which is the reason that they collaborate with so many different styles of artists for their albums. None of the albums sounds the same which makes the duo so different from other musicians. Despite originally being called The Burdocks when they started the name Dog Day was soon used in order to reflect the band's love for strange sounding names and music.

If you’re interested in more information about the duo and what events they’re playing as well as the albums that are set to be released, you can see their website here:
9 Three Days Grace Consisting of 4 members, the band is one of the biggest influences of Canadian Indie rock. The members include; Neil Sanderson, Brad Walst, Matt Walst, and Barry Stock, all of the members play a different role that contributes to the sound of the band as a whole. After signing with Jive Records during the early years of their career they have since released 6 studio albums with their debut being a self-titled album. They have been certified as double platinum and platinum by Music Canada a number of times for their singles and albums, many of their singles have reached the number one too making them extremely successful in their genre. As well as being described as indie rock, they also associate themselves with hard rock and nu metal as they tend to mix up the sound they create on their various albums. On their 2012 they have also incorporated some electro-pop which proved influential in their further albums and songs. They have won various awards and have been nominated for some of the best music awards around including; a Much Music Award and a Mediabase Award. Some of their most popular songs include; ‘Never Too Late’, ‘I Am Machine’, and ‘Just Like You’.

For more official information about Three Days Grace, their albums, or their history you can check out their website:
10 Chad VanGaalen Born in Alberta, Canada in 1977, Chad VanGlaalen is a musician and instrumentalist who is known for his unique sounding indie rock tracks. He started out recording songs with some independent record labels and even done some of his own homemade CD’s. His first album release was in 2004 when he signed to Flemish Eye (who are known for signing indie rock artists in Canada), he has since released 5 more albums with the same record label. Many of his albums have won awards in the past few years including a 2009 Polaris Music Prize and a Juno Award. Chad is known for his great indie rock songs including; ‘Molten Light’, ‘Weighed Sun’, and ‘Cut off My Hands’. When performing, he is often assisted by other musicians from various other Canadian bands allowing him to change up his music style. Not only has he recorded 6 albums through a record label, he has had 4 EP’s and 1 collaboration album with the artist Xiu Xiu in 2012. As well singing and song writing, VanGaalen is a talented keyboardist, drummer, and guitarist meaning that most of his songs are self-composed.

If you’re interested in finding out more about Chad VanGaalen and wish to know about his upcoming albums, tours, or events then you can visit the website here:

All You Need to Know About Indie Rock and its History

Originating in the United States during the 1980’s, indie rock is a style of alternative rock that from artists who are signed to independent record labels. Since its origin, there have been many different bands and artists who have popularised indie rock getting their hits and singles into the top charts. Despite a lot of indie rock bands coming from all over the world, the main contenders come from countries such as the USA, UK, and Canada. The best indie rock bands originated in these countries and have then gone on the storm the industry with their music. Indie rock is a very particular genre but its history shows how some of the best indie rock artists came about and discovered the sound in all its glory. From the likes of The Smiths and R.E.M, there are so many different bands that have given indie rock its famous name.

The history of indie rock music can be traced back to the 1800’s when there was African Slavery in America, many of the people who perform and write songs related to blues and jazz which would then be blended with African rhythms with the English they had learned to speak. Yet, the real start of indie rock came about when rock and roll became popular in 1945.

Alternative rock was born in 1975 with many underground bands coming up and performing more mainstream concerts and this laid the work for the coming genre of indie rock and pop which came about in 1980.

Despite indie rock starting in the 1980s, it only really became popular during the 2000’s in the UK and US, the genre is one of the most diverse in the whole music industry as bands can have a sound of indie-pop, punk, or even grunge. Bands like The Kook and The Shins played a very important role in the genre and songwriter as some of the best indie rock bands of all time. Artists like Foster the People are more recent additions to the indie rock/pop world and have allowed the sound of indie rock to reach the top charts.

1980 – The birth of indie rock comes about, and nobody realises the amount of popularity it will eventually gain. Some of the most influential and best indie rock artists begin to emerge and become popular.

1989- The record label XL recordings songwriters, they’re one of the only record labels to properly start letting indie rock bands signed to them. They were essentially the turning point for indie rock in allowing different styles of music to become popular.

1999 – Indietronica becomes popular making indie rock more famous and allowing even more artists to come to the forefront and make music for the world to hear. The band Belle and Sebastian from the UK are an indie rock band who are voted as Best British Newcomer and pave the way for more bands like them to become some of the best indie rock has seen.

2004 – Post-punk revival begins and becomes extremely popular with many fans, this is a very stripped-down and back to basics version of many bands, who proceed to create music in this genre thus bringing other indie genres popular again. Bands such as Dog Days and Nickelback start to gain popularity with the public.

2012 – The US Bureau of Statistics released their statement that the number of indie musicians has risen by 71% since 2003 meaning that indie rock is only growing day by day and year by year with a number of artists creating indie rock music.

Over the course of history, the indie rock band scene has changed a lot, there have been bands that have seen a lot of popularity and given indie rock a beautiful name. Despite not everyone liking indie rock, it’s origins and history show how popular it is with certain people and how the fans have always been totally dedicated to listening. Indie rock may not be the biggest genre of music in the world, but surely is a very popular one with a lot of potentials to get even bigger in the future. The future of indie rock lies in the hands of those who like it and keep it living on forever, that is the best way to keep the genre popular and more alive than ever.