‘Year of the Dark Horse’ goes beyond a concept album, it’s almost like a mini musical of the past year of Jake Smith’s life. Not only has he released a brilliantly written album featuring 12 personal songs but it is accompanied by a visual, artistic interpretation of the story of the album, created by Jake Smith and features four different directors tackling each of the 12 songs. The music lends itself to this cinematic approach as the record takes you on a journey lyrically. Smith makes a statement of intent from the first track ‘Not Today’ which boasts a catchy chorus, his strong, gritty vocals accompanied by an explosive production. A stand out track for me is ‘Kingdom For A Fool’ which I think showcases Smith’s ability to turn a common phrase into a clever song and apply it to his own experiences. In conclusion, it’s a bold project from The White Buffalo but one I hope will pay off, it’s innovative, intriguing and captures the imagination.
Zoe Hodges, Editor