A reliably eccentric British indie scene again warms the cockles of the heart with what even in the light of the new incarnation of Mark Owen as alt-troubadour is a remarkably ludicrous achievement, introducing the alternative world to a 6’5” albino synth-pop ego from North Wales.
David Wrench, also gleeful recipient of a Viking ancestry, for the most part avoids what would be the clichéd trappings of novelty that are so often the given for such an act, and instead embarks on a sometimes all-too genuine, others illuminating attempt at subversive soundscapes. His oeuvre is a duality of wistful comic insights and poetics coated in what at times seems to be a parody of generic dance beats, and some wryly mournful synth-soul politicising that on this occasion manages to successfully stride the tightrope of the utterly prosaic.
Lead track ‘Superhorny’ is what would be “classic” Bloodhound Gang with only the remnants of a fertile brain to ennoble. Bouncing along with the albeit sad destiny of being danced to in darkness by the mythic lone character with the fluorescent penis sheath, it however retains a sufficient whiff of true pop ingenuity to save it from the absolute mire, and what at first seems like a quintessentially banal Chubby Brown line inserted mid-flight (“I’m superhorny/like test-match cricket/come here baby put your leg before my wicket”) is on retrospect actually quite funny. Undoubtedly a danger as commercially potent as anything by Aqua if it ever got out into the mainstream, in its current obscurity ‘Superhorny’ is essentially a pleasing musical oddity amounting to Fraggle Rock meets a rural Wales Marilyn Manson.
Availing oneself of the task of listening to more, track two succeeds in highlighting the more developed side of Wrench’s musical coin. Transcending mere musical parody, ‘Do It To You Wrong’ is what you would imagine to be classic Wrench, a smouldering throber this time resounding to a genuine beat, the gentle giant/pervert beguilingly mourning his priapic intent amid the lyrical scenery of psychological waste-land and painting a pretty decent picture. Going one further, the equally charmingly titled and politically charged ‘Fuck You (And Your War On Terror)’ will turn heads as actually a delicate and mournful electro-waltz reminiscent even of the elegant Black Box Recorder, led by a foul-mouthed political depressive.
The overall effect of Wrench is beguilingly foul, and provided he can continue coating his perceptions in the forms of a genuine musical spark he could well be onto something. The danger is he'll descend into a murky eighties musical nightmare. If you’re looking for somebody to start or conversely end your party with some genuine alternative behaviour, Wrench is currently, either way, undoubtedly the man. Good luck to him.
7Neil Jones's Score