Black Horse Motel
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Black Horse Motel

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2008 | SELF

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2008
Band Folk Rock




"Black Horse Motel On the Hill Session at Kettle Pot Tracks"

Black Horse Motel… There are those occasions which a band name is suggestive of what you can expect a band to sound like, and there are those occasions where the precise opposite is true: With BHM, it’s somehow both. I saw their name on one of those digital images that we—inexplicably—somehow are calling ‘posters’ and/or ‘flyers.’ I was intrigued: I had an inkling of what to expect, but after some ‘research,’ I realized my expect ions were both met, and entirely exceeded.
In short, this band (folk) rocks. There is a superficial resemblance to bands like Mumford & Sons, but those appearances are barely skin deep. With BHM, there is a depth and breadth of both musicianship and lyrical sensibility that is utterly devoid in the aforementioned. Listen, think, and enjoy! - Kettle Pot Tracks

"#SoundCloudSunday: Black Horse Motel – “The Apology”"

If you want your ears to smile and your music-lovin-heart to flutter then check out “The Apology” by Black Horse Motel. This is true Americana greatness from this Philly band. I first saw Black Horse Motel about a year ago at Kung Fu Necktie and my ears haven’t been the same. “The Apology” has it all—a rich musical tone, charming vocals, excellent songwriting, beautifully arranged instruments, and an outro melody that I wish could play on repeat in my head for days on end. MAN, every time I start talking about great music I just get so caught up in it—I only hope my fellow music enthusiasts feel the same. - One Fan at a Time

"Boot & Saddle Show Highlight"

Can it be that Philly’s Black Horse Motel has only been around since 2011? Judging by the aged tones of their eponymous 2012 EP and 2013’s Red Summer Spirit full-length, this quartet could have been the soundtrack to Steinbeck’s Dust Bowl Depression with its quaintly stringed arrangements and handsome harmony vocals. Singers/instrumentalists David Richardson, Desirée Haney, Megan Manning and Galen Fitzpatrick have readied their first new batch of songs since Red Summer Spirit and will be joined on stage at the Boot by their equally rustic pals, Philly’s Song Dogs. - Philadelphia City Paper

"Pick of the day: Black Horse Motel"

Black Horse Motel released their new album today, entitled Red Summer Spirit. The Philly indie-folk ensemble will be performing this warm and colorful full-length at Kung Fu Necktie (for those of you in Philadelphia) this evening, with Hezekiah Jones. “Bristle and Pine” is such a wonderful song, the intro is a powerful build-up of strings and guitar leading to emotionally charged vocals that you only put on repeat after a romantic down-fall. Red Summer Spirit has many classic folk elements but it is not your average folk album. It blends Americana in a charming way and charmed we are. Hear for yourself by streaming the album at their bandcamp and support, support, support! -

"The Deli Magazine National spotlight on BHM album release"

Take singer-songwriter narrative scene-driven songs; insert a blending of male and female vocals resulting in smooth strengthening harmonies. Then, enrich the entire musical experience with clean sets of strings that hover above the threshold that lies between classical and rustic Americana. The quintet of Black Horse Motel has tapped into an increasingly popular musical genre that in a rejuvenating manner breathes fresh-air into a sound that echoes the past. Tonight at Kung Fu Necktie, the group marks the release of their first full-length album Red Summer Spirit. The eerie, haunting metal-accented folk/blues of The Bailey Hounds open the evening, while the beautifully genuine folk tunes of Hezekiah Jones, a.k.a. Raph Cutrufello, serve as the fulcrum for the night. - The Deli National -

"Show Review: Black Horse Motel, New Sweden, The Gallerist at Milkboy Coffee (7/27)"

Oh my, I got to see Black Horse Motel again and that band is still as breathtakingly-good as they were the first time I saw them a few months ago. Black Horse Motel’s music and performance simply lit up the venue and mesmerized the audience. I know I wasn’t the only one under Black Horse Motel’s beautiful musical trance that night. -

"[Sunday Listening] Red Summer Spirit – Black Horse Motel"

Everything about Black Horse Motel’s intro track to their debut album, Red Summer Spirit, is just right. From the warm and full string tones, the subtle banjo plucking and acoustic strumming, to the accompanying, light female vocals. It builds slowly, layering our ears from a minimal track to something bursting from the seams.

“The Apology” leads way into a very strong and powerful folk album from yet another Philadelphia local band. No frills, tight production and absolutely solid songwriting doesn’t take much to win me over upon first listen. The harmonies are natural from track to track, nothing ever sounding forced. With a huge debut full length behind them, finally, I’m excited to see what this spring/summer’s got in store for this five piece.

Stream the entire release, Red Summer Spirit, below and be sure to grab your free download of song, “Devil That You Know,” over at their bandcamp page. -

"Weekend Picks: Black Horse Motel at Milkboy Ardmore, Megafaun at Johnny Brenda’s"

Local band Black Horse Motel has all the banjo and tambourine you could ever hope for from a folk group. Despite playing all over Philly this past year, however, the band has yet to release an album. Thankfully, the band is currently running a kickstarter campaign to help fund the recording its first full length album this summer. Until then, the live tracks and rehearsal tapes available on the band’s website will have to do. Black Horse Motel performs with James Suit Friday at 8 p.m. at Milkboy Ardmore; tickets to the all-ages show are $8-10. —Nicole Soll - The Key - WXPN 88.5

"Black Horse Motel"

A newish local combo that’s gone through some membership changes of late, Black Horse Motel finally seems to have settled on a lineup. And an engaging sound that on the surface resembles any number of old-timey/Americana outfits employing banjos, harmonica, cello and a generally indie-folk vibe, but which occasionally nods to OK Computer-era Radiohead or Scotland’s Frightened Rabbit with its moody melodies and dramatic sonic arcs. Singer/multi-instrumentalist Andras Szeles’ baritone is rich and comforting, even when his lyrics are troubled, and it blends beautifully with the voices of the two ladies and one gent that round out the foursome. Definitely a Philly band to keep eyes and ears on in 2011. -Michael Alan Goldberg

8pm. $8. With Lion Versus, Fallen Troubadours + City Slides. North Star, 27th and Poplar sts. 215.787.0488.

Read more: - Philadelphia Weekly

"Tonight’s Concert Pick: Black Horse Motel at North Star Bar"

Everything you need to know about local folk-rock quartet Black Horse Motel can be found in the “About” section of the band’s website, which states, “bio needed.” OK, so that’s not much to work with, but in the photo section, you’ll find…uh, a line that says, “photos coming soon!” Well, at least they have a music section, which contains everything you could ask for—assuming that you’re only asking for a note that states, “we are writing new music…we need to write something else here,” and points you in the direction of a few “poor quality rehearsal tapes.” (To be fair, there are two for-real songs available as well.) So, basically, Black Horse Motel is still in the process of getting its act together. But, even if the information is a bit vague, the music features the kind of plucky banjos, harmonicas, and general front-porch indie-folk vibe you’ve likely grown comfortably familiar with by now. Black Horse Motel performs with The Sea Around Us and Lion Versus at 9 p.m. at North Star Bar; tickets to the 21+ show are $8. - The Key - WXPN 88.5




Philadelphia's Black Horse Motel crafts its genre-fluid city folk sound by taking traditional folk instrumentation and lyrics, blending them with Americana roots, rock, blues, and country influences and tying it all together with rich vocal harmonies. The resulting sound is infectiously foot-stomping, heart-breaking, familiar and new.

In 2012, Black Horse Motel offered their first recording; a self-titled EP. In 2013, they followed up with their debut full-length LP, Red Summer Spirit.

The next three years brought several lineup changes while the group continued to hone their sound and expand their fan base. The current group is Desiree Haney(cello/keys/vocals), Megan Manning (drums/percussion/vocals), Galen Fitzpatrick (guitar/dobro/vocals), and Ryann Lynch (fiddle/vocals).

The now cemented four piece released Parable, a 5-song EP, in January 2017, after a successful PledgeMusic campaign.

In the fall of 2017, Black Horse Motel competed in Philadelphia councilman David Oh’s city-wide PHL Live music competition and won the Country/Folk category! Prizes included cash and studio time.

Black Horse Motel also won twice at 2018’s local Homey Awards, hosted by 93.7 WSTW - for Best Folk Song, and EP of the Year!

Partnering again with engineer/producer Ron DiSilvestro, the band headed back to the renowned Studio 4 in Conshohocken, PA and Forge Recording in Oreland, PA, to record their next EP in the winter of 2018. The finished product was once again mastered by Grammy Award winner, Phil Nicolo.
And Then You Were Gone was released on July 20, 2018 to all major online outlets.

Black Horse Motel has performed at the famed Philadelphia Folk Festival in Schwenksville, PA, the Dewey Beach Music Conference and Dewey Beach Americana Festival in Dewey Beach, DE, Musikfest in Bethlehem, PA, Xtreme Folk Festival in Telford, PA and the People’s Choice Festival in State College, PA. The group has also performed at many popular Philadelphia-area venues, including World Cafe Live, Boot & Saddle, Ardmore Music Hall, and Bourbon & Branch. The group has begun spreading their sound to the greater Philadelphia area, with performances in Jenkintown, King of Prussia, Phoenixville, New Hope, State College, and Wilkes-Barre, as well as to Brooklyn, NY, Ithaca, NY, Baltimore, MD, Charleston, WV, and Nashville, TN. Black Horse Motel has been featured as live performers on several radio programs, including Delaware’s WSTW Hometown Heroes show, The Folk Show on WXPN, Folkadelphia on XPN2, and Y-Not Radio.

Band Members