Sturgill Simpson’s New Album ‘Sound & Fury’ is a Futuristic, Prog/Blues-Rock Steampunk Space Epic with an Accompanying Anime Film (Watch/Listen)

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Rock Cellar Magazine

When Sturgill Simpson dropped a new song and music video titled “Sing Along” in late August, there’s no way his fans were ready for what they heard and saw.

Simpson, fresh off the monumental success of his 2016 album A Sailor’s Guide to Earth — which picked up the Best Country Album at the Grammy Awards that year — seems to have made a sharp 180-degree turn away from country, and into instead … space-prog-sleaze-rock, or something? It’s confusing, but it’s also really cool:

The new album, Sound & Fury, is out today. And it’s wild.

For this album, Simpson teamed up with manga artist Takashi Okazaki and filmmaker Junpei Mizusaki on a corresponding anime film, which launched on Netflix in conjunction with the album’s release today.

The album’s songs feature space themes (“Best Clockmaker on Mars”), feature genre mash-ups incorporating synth, blues/rock, prog, and a myriad of other sounds and styles all mashed into an endlessly captivating experience.

In terms of inspiration, Simpson said he listened to “a lot of hip-hop, and Black Sabbath, and the Cars, and old funk records,” in coming up with this material, for example.

It’s really unlike anything you’d expect from Simpson, given his reputation as a “country artist,” which makes it one of the most compelling releases in quite some time.

Keep doing what you do, Sturgill Simpson — it’s refreshing.


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