You may dislike Stephen Wrench’s new single “Plow”, but you can’t argue with his credentials. Few members of the modern music business, in any capacity, can boast the same impressive list of working relationships Wrench has experienced in his forty-five years plus as a music professional. A small sampling of his past includes working with luminaries as diverse as Ozzy Osbourne, Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band, Tommy Tutone, Bad Company, and former members of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Grand Funk Railroad, and other bands. It’s obviously not been a bad run for someone who, as a young boy, harbored dreams of gridiron glory.
His new song is unadulterated rock. There’s a lot of melody in the songwriting despite its guitar-heavy approach though portions of the electric solo are flurries of notes rather than defined melodies. Such moments never adversely effect the cut. Balancing the biting electric with forceful and churning acoustic rhythm guitar is the key piece making “Plow” work as well as it does.
The other element is its arrangement. It’s a simple song really with a recognizable progression, but Wrench knows where to build in the right turns that spur the song’s momentum. Take note of how the song never has an up-tempo pace yet seems to subtly accelerate as it moves towards its conclusion. It never feels rushed and checks every box despite its predictable development. If something isn’t broke, why fix it?
One may wonder how an arch-traditional rocker such as this can find mass appeal in 2021. Timelessness, by its very definition, never goes out of style. The eternal verities of songwriting Wrench mastered long ago still serve him well and the distinction listeners will draw between “Plow” and material from lesser artists working in a similar vein is clear. You believe Stephen Wrench when he sings about being happy with his woman in a remote cabin.
That’s what makes the best music. It isn’t complicated. It never will be. People want songs that speak to emotions they recognize and situations they’ve known. Stephen Wrench supplies that and more. He sings with unrestrained zest for life, no small feat who’s forgotten more than many will ever know about music, and the joy he experiences performing comes through in every second of “Plow”. It offers listeners a glimpse into his heart, doesn’t pull any punches, and never takes on more than it handle.
Listen to the surging roar in his voice when he delivers the song’s payoff lines. Don’t turn your ears away from the growl of the song’s guitar, the committed thrashing powering its rhythm playing, and the song’s swing. It’s the gift that keeps giving. Wrench throws himself into the song with the abandon of someone a quarter century younger and it isn’t the last blast of a fading star. He’ll be back with something new, have no doubt. Until then, however, “Plow” will more than remind longtime rock fans that the genre is far from dead. Long may Stephen Wrench and his ilk run.
Donate to IndiePulse Music Magazine’s Academic and Music Education Scholarship Program HeartBeat4Kids
IndiePulse Music Magazine creates Scholarships to help Youth In Need of assistance to complete their educational goals and stay in school.