American-born Leschen featured a stellar cast of Kiwi musos on his debut album, but for ‘Black Horses’, it is a solo effort.  Recorded by Robbie Duncan at Braeburn Studios in Wellington, this is a strong set of songs, stormy folk music based around deft picking and strumming and his Dylanesque vocal phrasing.  Opener The Double Cross sets the tone for this mix of Tex-Mex, alt-country and folk-blues. Other highlights include Long Great Mile, Man With No Country and Wild Roses & Satin.  The lyrics are worldly and transcend the sadly usual clichés that seem to come with the territory.  And references to folk and rock music from the 1960s will make this accessible to anyone still scared of country music.  I had never heard of this guy, but I really enjoyed listening to the album.


- Simon Sweetman, NZ Musician 14(3):42 April/May 2008