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2023 NSMZ Rock Artist of the Year: The Hourhand

Article by Melanie Macpherson, photos by Deanna Roos

Last year NSMZ awarded The Rising Star award to The Hourhand.  Intended as a nod to an artist or band that is relatively new and raw, but showing a lot of promise.  Essentially it means we can’t wait to see what they are going to do next.  That might seem like a lot to live up to, but it certainly didn’t intimidate The Hourhand.  The incredibly talented Regina trio, made up of Cole van Woert (guitar), Gray Farrow (vocals, bass, keys) and Dawson Dressler (drums), was up for the challenge.  

Since last year’s awards were handed out, these boys have continued the grind that brought them to our attention in the first place.  Working with the extremely talented Prehistoric Productions, The Hourhand released a fantastic music video for “Hellbent”.  If you look closely you can even see me playing poker in the background.  Then, they released an incredible new single “Setting Sun” that lit things up.  

The boys have played in Regina, Saskatoon, Prince Albert, and Swift Current with a variety of bands like Crown Lands, Small City Blues, Sparrow Blue, Seven Mile Sun, Kit Langfield & The Brothers G, Will Ardell, Autopilot and The Radiant.  In August, they competed and won “The Rock Off” a battle of the bands style contest that landed them a slot as main stage opener at Rockin’ the Fields of Minnedosa in Manitoba.  And to top it all off, they finished off the year by playing a sold out show in Waterloo, Ontario with Monster Truck.   That’s a hell of a year for these ‘Hellbent’ rockers.

With more talent than seems fair for three people to possess, a healthy dose of rock ‘n roll swagger, and a wickedly entertaining stage show, The Hourhand is everything a rock band should be.  This also makes them the obvious choice for NSMZ’s Rock Artist of the Year.  

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