“Despite a massive publicity campaign, Fresh Horses failed to match the success of its predecessors, which meant that its successor, Sevens, had to return Garth Brooks to his superstar status in order to be considered a hit. Part of the problem with Fresh Horses is that it embraced arena rock instead of merely flirting with it; as a result, large portions of his audience refused to follow him” (Erlewine).
“Sevens corrects that misstep by retreating to traditional country territory and establishing a new, folky country-pop direction. Theoretically, it sounds like the perfect move, but Sevens doesn’t quite play as smoothly as it should. The music never catches fire and often sounds weary instead of hushed and intimate. There are no sweeping epics, no rockers, no steps forward; there’s none of the risk-taking that made his early albums so successful” (Erlewine).
“Instead, Sevens is an album of small, subtle pleasures, whether it’s the swinging Longneck Bottle or the moving ballad She’s Gonna Make It. These aren’t great leaps forward, but they’re well-written and performed, making for solid additions to his catalog” (Erlewine).
“Unfortunately, there aren’t enough of these moments on Sevens. Only a handful of songs match the level of those two, and since the filler itself lacks power, the end result is an album that is surprisingly lackluster” (Erlewine).