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Grass City

Triumphant Glory Blues Rock 

Grass City is back! And back with a glorious reprisal. They have emerged once again with the release of their epic new album, Through Harvest There’s Hope.

“It’s a personal vendetta,” as vocalist/guitarist Kurtis Dernisky likes to put it. “The title is so fitting to what we just went through in the last four years. It was like harvesting our own baby. We just nurtured this shit and just love it, just like a child.”

It has been four years since we’ve heard a peep from this crew but after one listen to the new album it’s quite apparent that it was well worth the wait. Four years of soul searching, personal tragedies, and nose-to-the-grindstone writing sessions are most often the perfect ingredients to cook up a nerve chilling musical slab of legendary proportions. And that has been the underlying story of what Grass City has done.

“It’s been a lot of writing and just a lot of maturing,” says Dernisky as he starts to go into it.

“It was a time where a bunch of us just moved out of Vancouver and bought some houses. A couple of people in the band went through some parental deaths. That was just devastating to all of us as we’ve gotten to know these people in our lives.” Guitarist Pat Ferguson chimes in. “We definitely did some soul searching and decided we are not going to do another show until we write this album.”

Soon enough the boys hunkered down in Bully’s Studio in New West with engineer Michael Kraushaar and gave birth to this gem. You can hear the blood and passion that pours out of the record. With dazzling triple guitar harmonies and Dernisky’s raw, soul clenching vocal delivery, the album emotes a rare vibe that has a very distinct sound that only Grass City can lay claim to.

It was around 2006 when Dernisky and Ferguson began to plant the seeds of the band during down time from their other projects at the time. There was instant chemistry from the old friends and soon drummer Stew Johnson, guitarist Bryan Wolosnick were recruited. Later, bassist Kyle Fee came on board for the latest recording. In 2007 and 2009, we saw the swift back-to-back releases of Laid To Rest and The Crown EP, respectively, followed by a flurry of local gigging that left audiences with their jaws joyfully gaping, as the band leaves it all onstage in a pile of sweat. There was some buzz and excitement around this band.

So it’s a plump treat for Vancouver music fans that they are back in the fold doing what they love best. With the four-year wait you get the sense that the Grass City boys are proud they could take the time to get it right and make some drastic steps forward musically. They have made the successful transfer from a young band to a band that has truly found an identity. “It was so nice to work when you have time and don’t have to think about the next gig. We are looking forward to the fun things that can happen when you come out fresh,” says Ferguson.

The next step, of course, is the time for the live shows so the boys can lay all the hard work down and grace the stage once again. They have been missed as one of the more intense live bands in Vancouver, with a unique triple axe attack drenched in heartfelt fervor. So come witness Grass City’s onslaught because you never know just where these guys will end up.

Grass City will be playing with Bison and The Sumner Brothers at the Rickshaw Theatre on Feb. 22

-Heath Fenton