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The Beans – “Up and In?” [Listen]
And I’ve seen it before now
I know I missed holes in the plot

New local band alert! 🚨 The Beans are a new project from the Andthenyoudie roster of talent (learn more about the collective through my article for CFMU!). It was such a treat to hear what the musicians have been cooking up next. Rapper and poet Paulo Leon pivots into indie rock as the trio drops their debut EP, F*ck it, we are The Beans. A Tame Impala influence stood out to me right away, a fave band of mine. I got to catch their impressive live set at Hamilton Music Collective’s outdoor music series Eclectic Local, which I was pleased to help curate.

The Beans. Photo by @emiiprii on IG.

Melissa Marchese – “Gimme More” [Listen]
Your touch your song
Better give me something new

I’ve said it before – local singer-songwriter Melissa Marchese can sing absolutely anything! Her commanding vocals and stage presence are a joy to watch, no matter what band she is apart of. Melissa just shared her third solo single, “Gimme More,” and it’s my favourite release yet from this talented singer. The groovy, sultry, and throwback classic rock style suits her so well. A great summer track for your playlists!

Melissa Marchese

Ryan Sykes – “I Got This” [Listen]
Everything you said to me
Did to me
Make me believe
Is water off my back now

Ryan Sykes has been working hard over the past few years, producing super fun pop music and honing in on his own style as an artist. All of that work has led up to his debut full length album, Grateful. Ryan shares: “From a very young age I always felt especially attached to music, it was everywhere. Listening to what my parents would play or overhearing the 2010 pop anthems my two sisters would blast from their room. Along with loving music, I enjoyed another aspect of music and sound, which was singing. Growing up I always felt like I could not express my emotions in a suitable manner and it felt like as a male I was not allowed to enjoy singing or performing. I began to start messing around with writing music around the age of 10, I must admit those songs are definitely never going to see the light of day. I experimented through my younger years and as soon as I hit high school something lit up inside of me. I started my music career in 2019 and have been non-stop in the studio.” It’s exciting to watch a young artist at this early stage of their career!

Ryan Sykes

The Hi-Cats – “Different World” feat. Jon Harvey [Listen]
I feel enlightened
I’ve been fighting towards a dream

This year, Hamilton hip hop staples, The Hi-Cats, shared a brand new track featuring Jon Harvey of Monster Truck. I first caught the group perform live way back during the early beginnings of I Heart Hamilton, a decade ago. That’s one of the best parts of exploring our local music scene – witnessing the longevity of local acts as they evolve and continue to deliver great music. It was also awesome to catch The Hi-Cats recently performing at the annual Concrete Canvas festival, and they always put on an entertaining show. Check out the live performance video for this one!

The Hi-Cats

Spookyguava – “Heartbeats” [Listen]
I can’t listen to my heartbeats all night long
I’m awake inside my sleep writing songs

Emerging local artist Spookyguava follows up his last single, “Bones,” with the catchy, upbeat track, “Heartbeats,” leaning into a indie retro synth vibe with this one. The musician has said he doesn’t feel confined by genre, he just creates, and that has led the way for a diverse selection of releases so far. You can catch Spookyguava performing next at The Gasworks on August 25 as part of the 20th annual Arts Of August event, hosted by Living Rock.


Whitness – “Why” [Listen]
I know you feel it
Why do we just keeping on running away from each other

Whitness is a Hamilton/Toronto-based singer-songwriter who I came to discover last year with the release of her first single, “Jo Ki Jo.” She just shared a lovely and smooth jam, “Why,” this spring. Absolutely love hearing more R&B/pop out of the local scene! I recently caught Whitness performing at BLK Owned HamOnt’s vendor marketplace as part of Pop Ups at Pier 8, and look forward to future performances!


Bianca Bernardi – “Wildfire” [Listen]
You come in like a wildfire
Leaving ashes when you go

It’s so lovely to hear the new single from local singer-songwriter Bianca Bernardi. I love how the track builds, and when that bridge kicks into the final stretch of the song, chills! I’ve been a big fan of her voice and songwriting, and relatable banter in between during her live sets. Bianca has been hard at work on her original material for some time, and it must be so rewarding to get to finally share it. Looking forward to hearing this full album.

Bianca Bernardi

End Of The World 1969 – “Home, Pt. 2” [Listen]
No matter how bad it gets
You can always come home

End Of The World 1969 is an independent recording artist from Hamilton (a.k.a. Sam Scott) who just shared a new EP, Kids, on Father’s Day this year. It was a fitting release day, as the local musician shares that the two indie folk rock tracks are a “meditation on parenthood.” He elaborates: “The songs were written between the birth of [my] first and second child and represent [my] unique observations and attempts to process the experience.” Look out for more music, including a full length LP, coming soon.

End Of The World 1969

The Ruddy Ruckus – “Bloodbath” [Listen]
Are you desperate, bitter temperament
Thinking life is a bloodbath and that you’d get out if you could

After sharing their full length album, Wentworth And Main, last year, Hamilton rockers The Ruddy Ruckus return with new material. The band shares their honest songwriting approach when creating this new track: “I remember putting those words down on paper and recognizing that it was some of the most honest things I had ever said through lyric writing — that feeling of absolute desperation but making the decision to trudge through the messiness and carry on, even if the future is unclear.” Catch the band playing at Doors Pub on August 26.

The Ruddy Ruckus

Captain WildChild – “Fantasy” [Listen]
I don’t wanna wake up
From this dream of fantasy

Captain WildChild is a new rock ‘n roll Hamilton trio on my radar, although they were first established in 2018. The band just dropped their debut full length release, Infinite Pleasure, which kicks off with this high energy, rollercoaster of a number, letting you know what you’re in for. Check out the music video!

Captain WildChild. Photo by Lorraine Postma.

Counterparts – “Whispers Of Your Death” [Listen]
Collapsing in arms of uncertainty
Knowing I could never let you go

Another newer band on my radar, Hamilton’s Counterparts are already metalcore heavyweights. The band gears up to release their seventh full length album, A Eulogy For Those Still Here, this October. Brendan Murphy of the band describes the emotional meaning behind this new single, sharing that the song is about his rescued cat, Kuma, who recently fell very ill, but now has thankfully recovered. Brendan shares: “I love him more than anything in the world and this song is my tribute to him for quite literally giving me a reason to live.” Check out the music video for this track.

Kristin Archer is the creator of I Heart Hamilton (, where she has blogged about experiences around her hometown since 2011, growing a social media presence along the way. Encouraging locals to “be a tourist in your own city,” she promotes arts and culture across her various social media platforms, blog, and weekly radio show on 93.3 CFMU.

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