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A Thousand Horses – Bridges album review

The band mix new material with live tracks on their second release.

A Thousand Horses
Credit: Big Machine
A Thousand Horses - Bridges

Credit: Big Machine Records

Forming in 2010, A Thousand Horses released their debut self-titled EP through Interscope Records that same year. In 2014 they switched labels and released their debut album Southernality in June 2015. That album spawned the band’s first number one single Smoke, which was certified Gold in the US. Two years on from that album, A Thousand Horses have released Bridges, which is classed as their second album but is really an EP featuring 6 new tracks and 7 live tracks.

Bridges arrives on the heels of Preachin’ to the Choir, a song that is a little different sonically for the band. It’s less rocky than their previous material and injects a bit of gospel into the overwhelming country sound. It’s a mix that works well for the band and in my opinion it’s their strongest single to date. The track appears twice on Bridges, with the live version really bringing it to life.

Of course it’s the new material that fans will be buying this release for. Bridges opens with Blaze Of Somethin’, a slow-building track that explodes with Michael Hobby’s gritty vocal bringing to mind Kip Moore. Second track Burn Like Willie has a bit more attitude and it’s one of the best tracks on Bridges. The sing-a-long chorus ensures the song will be a live favourite and that it sticks in your head after a handful of listens.

Elsewhere One Man Army is a soaring ballad that shows a softer side to the band, title track Bridges is a more commercial and radio-friendly moment, and Weekends in a Small Town celebrates being part of a close-knit community.

Of the live tracks included here, six of them were released on A Thousand Horses’ limited edition Live From London Metropolis Studios vinyl, which arrived for Record Store Day. The tracks are a mix of new tracks and selections from Southernality. The closing track is a live version of Smoke recorded at Printer’s Alley in Nashville. These live tracks highlight just how good a live band A Thousand Horses are.

Bridges does what its title suggests; it bridges the gap between Southernality and a full album of new material. The new songs show a lot of promise and accompanied by the live tracks, Bridges further highlights why there is so much hype surrounding the band. Until a new album arrives or the band returns to tour the UK, this release will do nicely.

 

Track List: 1. Blaze Of Somethin’ 2. Burn Like Willie 3. Preachin’ to the Choir 4. One Man Army 5. Bridges 6. Weekends in a Small Town 7. Travelin’ Man (live) 8. Preachin’ to the Choir (live) 9. Sunday Morning (live) 10. One Man Army (live) 11. Bridges (live) 12. First Time (live) 13. Smoke (live) Record Label: Big Machine Records Release Date: 2nd June 2017

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