The team's second defeat of the week - following Tuesday night's 3-1 defeat at Queens Park Rangers - came in a game that was affected by snow throughout.
Bruce, whose side are now eight points behind Cardiff City in the automatic promotion hunt, told reporters after the game that his side failed to adapt to the playing conditions.
"It was an awful night and I don't want to make that an excuse but the conditions certainly didn't help," the manager said. "We couldn't play any sort of real football out there. They adapted to the conditions better than we did and it wasn't a night for our wide players because they couldn't run with the ball.
"It was a difficult night for all. We have played a certain type of football but on a night like tonight, if I had seen it coming down the way it was, I might have picked a different team.
"When we left the hotel it was a glorious afternoon, by the time it kicked off. When we came in from the warm-up there was grass. When we came back out there was two inches of snow. It was a difficult night."
Villa will look to bounce back from their two defeats with a match against Hull City on Saturday.