Gillian Stone is a Toronto-based multi-instrumentalist whose work has been described as “a mix of Black Mountain, PJ Harvey and Weyes Blood” (PhotogMusic). Her songwriting draws from post-rock, art-rock, folk, minimalism, and ambience. Born and raised on the traditional territory of the Quw’utsun on Vancouver Island, with a profound connection to her Icelandic heritage, Stone channels the influence of outer landscapes in her inner lyrical worlds and soundscapes. Her music is often the product of processing her darkest emotions, particularly those related to shame, depression, addiction, self-doubt, and loss. She juxtaposes these themes with textures that range from tender to explosive in order to produce a singular sonic environment.
Stone’s debut release, “Bridges”, was described as “a dark and beautiful song; a song of many textures” (Monolith Cocktail) and “achingly vulnerable” (The Joy of Violent Movement). Her most recent single, “Shelf”, co-produced with experimental cellist Michael Peter Olsen (Zoon, The Hidden Cameras, Arcade Fire), is a droning lullaby that explores feelings of alienation and dissociation after a trauma. The video for “Shelf” is Stone’s directorial debut, filmed in collaboration with Toronto filmmaker John M. Hall. Stone and Olsen reunited in the summer of 2021 to collaborate on her forthcoming EP, Spirit Photographs, to be released in 2022. This project is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.
Stone holds a BFA in Jazz Studies from Vancouver Island University and an MA in Ethnomusicology from the University of Toronto. Her vocals and playing have been featured on projects by Alli Sunshine (FORCES), The Fern Tips (Beams, Ace of Wands), Völur (Blood Ceremony), and Althea Thauberger. She has performed in several notable Canadian festivals, including NXNE, Canadian Music Week, Open Ears Festival, In the Soil Arts Festival, and the Victoria International Jazz Festival.
Photo by Kira May