Album Review

Brown Horse - Reservoir

Reservoir is rife with something that can't be taught, bought or earned at the top of any chart: heart.

Album - Brown Horse - Reservoir
January 22, 2024 4:21 pm GMT
Last Edited January 25, 2024 3:27 pm GMT

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Brown Horse - Reservoir

Label: Loose Music

Producer: Owen Turner

Release Date: January 19, 2024

Tracklisting:

1. Stealing Horses

2. Reservoir

3. Shoot Back

4. Everlasting

5. Bloodstain

6. Paul Gilley

7. Sunfisher

8. Silver Bullet

9. Outtakes

10. Called Away

Brown Horse have dubbed themselves "alt-country nobodies", but their debut album, Reservoir, proves that may not be true. At least not for long.

The UK-based band first cut their teeth around the pubs in Norwich as a foursome. Now a six-piece, they've refined their style, marrying their folk sound with a persuasion for country rock. While Reservoir, their first full-length effort, shows the work of such an evolution, it's by no means a perfect album.

From the opening track 'Stealing Horses', which falls flat in a messy display of accordion, slide guitar and banjo, to the final offering 'Called Away', a tune that comes up short in its painfully formulaic approach, there are flaws. But there is also plenty of promise.

Reservoir is rife with something that can't be taught, bought or earned at the top of any chart: heart. You can hear it beating in the steely control of ‘Shoot Back’, the striking electricity of ‘Bloodstain’ and the fiery confidence of ‘Silver Bullet’.

Once you dig underneath the exaggerated, weepy-chic vocals and at times contrived lyricism, you discover the character behind the songs, particularly in the subtle beauty of ‘Paul Gilley’ and the aching ‘Everlasting’.

Brown Horse have the ability to be honest and fearless. While Reservoir isn't a flawless first record, you can certainly hear a band on their way to becoming "alt-country somebodies". After all, nobodies don't tend to stay that way for long.

6 / 10

Brown Horse's new project, Reservoir, is out now via Loose Music.

Written by Alli Patton
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