Charging out of the gate with a bold and impassioned debut, And so they ran faster…, Brooklyn artist Leah Siegel is off to quite an auspicious start under the guise of Firehorse.
Released late last year on Pledge Music, the album has earned significant critical praise from the likes of The Los Angeles Times, Paste, and The Wall Street Journal. Select performances in Los Angeles and New York City, including a buzzworthy showcase at the 2011 CMJ Music Marathon—Siegel’s live band includes guitarist Steve Elliot, bassist Tim Luntzel, and drummer Brian Wolfe—have generated even further acclaim.
And so they ran faster… is a vivid collision of songcraft and imagination, the realization of a promising artist flirting on the fringes of rock, funk, cabaret, indie pop, and dance in ways that are ahead of their time and beyond it altogether.
In recent years Siegel has made a name for herself in and around Manhattan as a resourceful musician and a captivating vocalist, either on her own or with soul/R&B combo Brooklyn Boogaloo Blowout and the Citizens Band cabaret troupe.
In 2006, following two short works, Leah Siegel Presents and The Lemon EP, she released her proper full-length solo debut, Little Mule. Her most realized effort up to that time, its progressive textures and unconventional song structures in some respects foreshadowed the music she now plays. Still, Siegel had misgivings; that the album was too self-conscious, too creatively confining, maybe even too contrived.
“I just thought,” she says, “That wasn’t what I meant to say… I realized how much I had held back and how much I’d been limiting myself.”
The enigmatic guise of Firehorse “reminds me that I should be able to do whatever the hell I want creatively,” Siegel explains. “It creates at least the slightest bit of anonymity so that you can do whatever you want, like going to a party and knowing no one; there’s no one to posture for.”