Eric Church makes a case for more serious material in country songwriting with the furious new single “Stick That in Your Country Song.”
Opening with an ominous acoustic guitar riff, Church outlines social issues plaguing people in cities like Detroit and Baltimore, along with veterans returning from combat and underpaid teachers. “Stick that in your country song/Take that one to Number One,” he commands, offering up a criticism of feel-good material on country radio as his band churns out some pummeling rock & roll. Church turns in a dynamic vocal performance throughout, ranging from a tense whisper in his early verses to a full-blooded scream in the second verse as he begs for someone to “Rock me hard, stop my heart/Blow the speakers out of this car.”
“Stick That in Your Country Song,” penned by Jeffrey Steele and Davis Naish, is the first official preview of Church’s next album, the as-yet-untitled follow-up to 2018’s Desperate Man. Church and a team of writers wrote many of the songs for the project during a retreat in North Carolina.
Over the past year, the country singer has offered up other glimpses of what could be on the new album. In April, he debuted the song “Never Break Heart” as part of the ACM Presents: Our Country special, performed “Jenny” for the Stagecouch livestream, and released a snippet of a song called “Through My Ray-Bans.”