Heartbreak Club’s first full-length 'Our Horse is Dead' is an upbeat mix of catchy and clever. The album stays interesting with a variety of sounds and themes and the lyrics are always quick-witted or poetic. The only downfall of this album is the band’s inability to decide whether they’ve grown up or not.
It’s easy to split the album into two sides: youthful, lighthearted teenage rock songs, and mature, complex, poetic songs. For the “youthful” side of the album, a few stand out. 'Are You Leaving Me?' has a ska-vibe with horns and a catchy chorus with the lyrics “Just sit down, I’ll break your knees. Just so you’ll have memories you can’t let go.” 'Jeepers' gives listeners a happy-go-lucky track with intelligent lyrics and a cutesy chorus.
Heartbreak Club really shines on the “mature” side of the album. These tracks tended to show off the band’s talent for creating complex songs. One of the best songs on the album is 'Depths Unseen,' which, with all the different sounds, creates an underwater feel starts of very slow and pretty with poetic lyrics and picks up speed as the song progresses. 'Lost' starts out with piano and strings is very emotional with the lyrics, “Give me salt and I’ll cover my tongue, To hide your taste, I feel blind, deaf ,and dumb.”
While the up-beat tracks are fun and energetic, they are a little messy and start to sound like a teenage garage band. The contrast between these two “sides” on the album is stark and it’s clear the band didn’t have a concrete sound they were going for. This isn’t a huge negative, but the lack of cohesion detract from the album as a whole.
Overall, Heartbreak Club does well for their full-length debut. The intelligent lyrics, variety of instruments, and mix of playful and serious themes on Our Horse is Dead gives the band a lot of potential to create some strong albums in the future.
'Our Horse is Dead' by Heartbreak Club is available now on Bandcamp.
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