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“S.O.S.” by The Wheel Workers

In the music video for their grinding new single “S.O.S.,” The Wheel Workers offer a full-bodied pop/rock response to the pessimism that has run rampant in pop culture recently. There are no linguistic clouds in the sky here, nor are there any vague references to the politics and purist lyricism that have left us in division far too often in the past few years; there’s only music, and the masterful artists bringing it to life. The Wheel Workers is made up of veteran players with strong alternative acumen, and whether you’re a professional music critic like myself or just a casual radio fan, I think you’re going to notice the experience that they bring into the studio with them in this stunning new single/video combo.

The rhythm in this track accentuates almost every component of the melody, starting with the string parts. On some level, I think that the grooves add to the physicality much in the way that the visuals contribute to the accessibility of the content overall. There’s nothing wrong with delivering something on the nose if you know what you’re doing, and thankfully for music connoisseurs everywhere, The Wheel Workers have a good grasp of what kind of material they want to stamp their moniker on. This isn’t an easy piece of music at all, but they still make it sound like a simple, black-and-white pop song just the same, save for the layered extravagance within the harmony in the chorus, that is.

“S.O.S.” probably didn’t need as much of a bassline presence as it was afforded, but I think that the imagery in the music video does a good job of compensating for such cosmetic inefficiencies as far and few in-between as they are. There isn’t anything about the video or the single on its own that I would deem offensively over the top; in fact, this is truly one of the more inspiring new songs I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing in the year 2023. In both dark times and the brightest of days, music like this can make all the difference in the world when it comes to getting people on the same page, and in this respect, The Wheel Workers’ timing couldn’t have been any better.

Robust and righteously untethered to the camp of typical works that toe the line of experimentalism, indie rockers can’t go wrong with “S.O.S.” at the moment. I just started listening to The Wheel Workers just recently, but if this is the kind of music that they plan on divvying out to the masses in the future, I’m planning on sticking around for more of their work. There is no shortage of indie artists coming out of the shadows in 2023, but among the more aesthetically streamlined groups that I’ve come across, these guys are one of the more promising crews to be releasing new music this season. I like what I hear, and after you take a peek at the music video for this track, I think you’ll share my sentiments.

Mindy McCall



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