CD Reviews

Dark Horse - 'Let It Ride' Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     February 18, 2014    
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'Let It Ride' could certainly be a "Dark Horse" for my album of the year.

To quote Joan Jett, "I love Rock 'n' Roll". I'm also partial to a bit of Country, particularly from the more guitar-based artists like Keith Urban and Dallas Smith, and let's face it, The Eagles are a Country band at heart. So when Rock and Country meet square on, it's inevitably going to appeal to me. Enter Dark Horse.

I first heard about Dark Horse on a few months ago. I was interested by the band's direction, but my interest was piqued even more by their lead vocalist, none other than ex Danger Danger and solo artist Paul Laine. After much cajoling and persuasion with their label I was finally rewarded with a copy of their debut album, and it more than lives up to my expectations.

So is it Rock with a Country leaning, or Country with a gritty Rock edge? To be honest, it's both, so it's irrelevant. Though some people will be put off by the Country description, at the heart of the music is pure and simple Rock 'n' Roll, but when it's dressed up with slide guitar and banjo it will be described as Country. And as Paul Laine maintains in my interview with him in this issue, it was never intended as Country at the start, but these songs were in his heart and the lyrical content lends itself perfectly to the genre. Image wise, it's more about jeans and black leather than cowboy hats and checked shirts.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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Anybody still unsure should mosey on over to and check out the video for the first single 'In The Country'. You will see that if you look past the slide guitar and Country twang you're left with a wonderfully catchy Melodic Rock anthem. 'Wouldn't Have Missed It For The World' and 'Heaven Tonight' head down a similar road, with the former especially benefiting from some amazing slide guitar work and snappy solos from guitarist Steve Ohe, while 'Let It Ride' is a grittier-edged Rock orientated number that only leans toward the Country sound with the intermittent flurry of fiddle and banjo. When it comes to the ballads, 'What She Meant To Me' is unashamedly Eagles orientated with its lush harmonies and pedal steel, but 'Goodbye' is a beautifully crafted power ballad that wouldn't sound out of place on any Melodic Rock album on Frontiers Records roster.

Laine's Danger Danger buddy Bruno Ravel is also on hand to assist with the mixing of the album, and it sounds amazing. As it's not officially released until April 2014, 'Let It Ride' could certainly be a "Dark Horse" for my album of the year.

Ant Heeks

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Comments (2)add comment

Evil Genius said:

I honestly haven't looked forward to album release this much since... well, ever. I have been lucky enough to preview some of these songs as well, and they are all amazing in their own right. Put it all together and you've got a gritty rock vibe in the country, and a bit of ole' country twang in the rock. This may actually be the best musical hybrid out there. In the end, I'll place my bet on this Dark Horse. Let it Ride, indeed.smilies/grin.gif
February 19, 2014
Votes: +1

lois k said:

THIS IS IT!!! its time for a refreshing new sound.not just the music and lyrics but the clean vocal delivery. WOW what a range paul has,and a voice that comes alive rather than a talking head sound which many of the country artists are doing either by design or because they are octavely challenged.
March 02, 2014
Votes: +1

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