Label: Big Machine Label Group
If the '80s taught us anything, it's that the most impactful introduction to a band is often through a power ballad. Case in point: A Thousand Horses' gem "Smoke," a gritty, yet entirely singable anthem that compares a relationship to cigarette addiction. "Tennessee Whiskey" has a similar feel, and on swaggering Southern rock winner "First Time," gospel singers are as amped as the guitars, as the group channels Skynyrd, the Black Crowes, and the Stones. Heartland rockers "Drunk Dial" and "Heaven Is Close" provide even more massive hooks. As you might imagine, this one's best played loud.