He names the Jayhawks, Wilco, Mark Knopfler, Paul Kelly, J.J. Cale and Blue Rodeo as influences for Winter Grass, the third release from Ottawa’s Gerry Wall. You can almost see, taste and hear the vistas painted in the lyrics of this 10-song release with songs titled “Winter Grass” and “Willow Bluff”. Somehow these southeastern Canadian-born tunes sound remarkably like they were conceived in the southwestern US. Adding to the colorful lyrics are coolly delivered harmonies and mostly acoustic instrumentation contributed by Dave Draves (Howe Gelb, Kathleen Edwards), Jeremy Gara (Arcade Fire) and Jens Lindemann (Canadian Brass, UCLA Music faculty). A particular highlight of the album are the lovely background vocals provided by Ana Muira. The album stays fresh with a good variety of songs and instrumental experimentation. Start with “Light the Match”. If that suits you, move on to “Come Along”, “(Total) Domination”, “I Don’t Aim” and “Northbound”. Winter Grass is available at CDBaby or Amazon as well as eMusic and iTunes.
About the author: Washington, D.C. area web designer by day. Music is my muse. I host Twangville‘s weekly Readers‘ Pick.