Led by the emotional lead single "Love Triangle," WildHorse is the debut full-length by budding country star RaeLynn, who first came to public attention in 2012 as a quarter-finalist on the second season on NBC's The Voice. Still a teenager when she first hitched her sweet Texan drawl to Team Blake, there's since been plenty of water under the bridge for the twenty-something singer/songwriter. A post-Voice deal with Republic Nashville yielded "Boyfriend," her spunky debut single whose promising chart success was followed by 2014's equally hooky "God Made Girls." After that, RaeLynn was shuffled around the Nashville system a bit, initially finding a home with Big Machine's Valory imprint, which released her first EP and helped put WildHorse in the can before surrendering her contract over to yet another label, Warner Bros. Nashville. Overcoming its many delays, the album finally launched in March 2017, its story reflecting the infectious moxie of its creator. An affable mix of electronic-laced pop and smart country storytelling, WildHorse was co-produced by Nicolle Galyon and Jimmy Robbins, a pair of Music Row songwriters who have been instrumental in stewarding RaeLynn's young career. As her co-writers and sound shapers, they help lend a cozy team vibe to this smartly crafted 12-song set, whose highlights include the sparkling electro-twang of "Insecure" and the bittersweet ballad "Diamonds." WildHorse is slick, for sure, and geared toward bright lights, but there's enough of RaeLynn's grit and personality shining through to make this a solid debut.
by Timothy Monger