Shine A Light (2003)
The Constantines may have started as a Guelph band, but by the time they got around to recording their second - and best - album, their unhinged fury was a fixture on Toronto stages. Shine A Light, however, takes that ferocity and angly instrumentation and hooks it to yearning, expertly crafted populist rock songs that forever saddled them with the tag "Fugazi-meets-Springsteen."
39. Meryn Cadell
Angel Food For Thought (1991)
Meryn Cadell's endearing second album - and entire musical career - should never be forgotten. Cadell is such a stunning lyricist that none of the largely spoken-word album's ample pop culture references - nor high school humiliation tale The Sweater, a top-40 Canadian hit in 1992 - seem dated in the least. Confessional, humorous, brave and completely original.
38. The Diodes
Best known for their new wave hit Tired Of Waking Up Tired from their second album, Released, the Diodes best captured the spirit and sound of the early Toronto punk scene with this self-titled debut. Raw and primitive, but also full of genuine pop hooks and shout-along choruses.
37. Oscar Peterson
Canadiana Suite (1964)
Given the number of albums Oscar Peterson has recorded, it's tough to pick just one to represent his legacy. On Canadiana Suite he's in top form as a player and bandleader and also explores his abilities as a composer. Easily one of the best jazz pianists of all time.
36. Ugly Ducklings
Somewhere Outside (1967)
The buzzing fuzz guitar leads and pounding garage rock rhythms of the Ugly Ducklings seem like the polar opposite of the gentler folk music that's more often associated with the Yorkville coffee house scene of the 60s, but these proto-punk pioneers are just as important to Toronto's musical history.
35. Change of Heart
Recorded just as alternative rock was jumping from college stations to the mainstream, Smile documents Toronto indie legends Change of Heart at the peak of their powers. The sprawling double album spawned their only top 40 hit, but its influence on the local scene was much bigger than sales figures can ever reflect.
34. Emily Haines & the Soft Skeleton
Knives Don't Have Your Back (2006)
Say what? Emily Haines's solo album made the list, but none by Metric? That's right. The Toronto musician took a giant step away from her band's hyperactive, super-glossy dance rock to show us a vulnerable side wholly detached from trends. Soft vocals, incisive lyrics, quietly elegant piano and gorgeous songwriting all around.
33. Crystal Castles
Combining underground experimental noise rock with melodic electro pop shouldn't work at all, let alone be massively popular. Nevertheless, the debut full-length by polarizing duo Ethan Kath and Alice Glass proved they were far more than just another novelty Myspace band, and it's aged far better than even their biggest fans predicted.
Local roots rockers Skydiggers' sophomore disc, Restless, featured the hit A Penny More and a number of tunes by Peter Cash. It was the band's most commercially successful album, but they lost access to the masters when the record company that released it (FRE) went out of business. Skydiggers released an album of demos from Restless called Still Restless in 1999.
The Teaches Of Peaches (2000)
A Roland MC-505 and hyperactive crotch can go a long way. At the time Peaches' farty minimalist beats, feral punk riffs and raunchy come-ons didn't resonate in the city's self-conscious music scene much beyond queer parties and the El Mocambo. Twelve years later, she's an influential star and her breakthrough LP remains a conduit for subversive sexual catharsis.