Manson explained the track's inspiration. "It's actually a song that's very un-Garbage like," she told Variety
. "I was driving through the Scottish countryside last year and looking at these fields of horses and thinking, what will happen to them when we don't need them as much as we once did? When they're no longer working beasts, what will happen to the horses? So it's an imagining of the future where the authorities destroy anything that doesn't make large amounts of money."
The band's producer and drummer Butch Vig
added: "'No Horses' started as a jam, hardly any music, like a lot of these weird noise loops, and Shirley sang this amazing line over it. It's very Patti Smith stream of consciousness, very pertinent politically to what's going on."