CJ Wiley

Tearing through Toronto on a groundswell gripping slacker rock, non-binary singer-songwriter CJ Wiley doesn’t waste any time. Twirling guitars, a steady drum beat, crunchy bass; ballads twanged slightly country, anthems skewed slightly grunge; a message of love and anger, healing and rancour, Wiley’s musical project is urgent and undeniable.

Performing alongside artists like Tokyo Police Club, Shannon and the Clams, or Haley Blais, and already a mainstay in the city’s queer music scene as the host of the Big Gay Night concert series, Wiley introduces themselves in songs as categorical and entrancing as the sold out shows they organize.

Aflame in a stirring spectrum of soulful Sheryl Crow Americana and the electric grumblings of Garbage or Hole, sometimes in the space of a single song, Wiley’s distinct voice carries their project with the wit, candour, and excitement of an artist with a striking perspective and a heart that demands to be heard.

With an EP in the books, Wiley has established a wide reaching sound of nighttime cruising melancholy, full-hearted campfire warmth, and anthemic rock just a few speakers shy of a stadium. Whether staged intimately solo or with the full sound of their backing band, Wiley brings a thrilling energy to the performance of every song.

2023 will mark the release of So Brand New, Wiley’s debut full length LP. The artist sojourned to Winnipeg to record with Boy Golden and that polished western resonance is obvious from the album’s first blasts. It’s a definitive new height for Wiley. It’s a passionate, tongue-in-cheek statement of certainty in themselves, a down-and-dirty roots-rock revelation that burns in a firestorm of its own conviction. Wiley sings of starting fresh, loss, gender, and how expensive it is to be alive, carving out a decisive path for themselves on a highway into and over the horizon — and they’re bringing you with them.

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