Sturgill Simpson Embraces Distorted Guitars, Eminem Swagger in New Song ‘Sing Along’

Joseph Hudak

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Sturgill Simpson has released the first song off his upcoming album Sound & Fury. “Sing Along” is a supercharged distorted rocker that finds Simpson growling, “You done me wrong, so here’s your song, now sing along,” in the chorus.

Sound & Fury will be released September 27th, the same day that the album’s accompanying anime film premieres on Netflix. The video for “Sing Along” arrives as preview of the movie, depicting a dystopian society where a shadowy figure in a muscle car wreaks havoc. Simpson announced plans for the Netflix film during San Diego Comic-Con in July.

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Sound & Fury is the follow-up to Simpson’s 2016 LP A Sailor’s Guide to Earth, which was named Best Country Album at the 59th Grammys. Judging by the pulsing, electronic vibe of “Sing Along” and how Simpson has previously described the album (“a sleazy, steamy rock n roll record”), Sound & Fury is far removed from any of the country stylings that informed his past work, especially the 2013 debut High Top Mountain.

“I was kind of in a weird spot when we made that record,” Simpson told Zane Lowe of Apple Music’s Beats 1. “I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do this anymore because a lot of the business sides of things, and like some heartbreak and betrayal, and just learning things that you already know … It is a dirty toxic industry. And I wanted to express a lot of that.”

Simpson produced Sound & Fury with his band — keyboardist Bobby Emmett, bassist Chuck Bartels, and longtime drummer Miles Miller — and recorded the project at a motor inn in Waterford, Michigan, northwest of Detroit. The LP’s album art features a muscle car with a radio tuner for a grill racing away from a mushroom cloud.

“I was listening to a lot of hip-hop, and Black Sabbath, and the Cars, and old funk records and things,” he told Lowe. “We were in Detroit while we were making the record, and I was sort of writing it in real time and listening to a lot of Eminem. And I was just like, ‘Man, this guy gets to talk mad shit. How come we can’t do that?’ So I just sat down and wrote a bunch of mad shit talking songs about how fucking awesome we are. And then we recorded it.”

Here’s the track list for Sound & Fury:
1.   “Ronin”
2.   “Remember to Breathe”
3.  “Sing Along”
4.   “A Good Look”
5.   “Make Art Not Friends”
6.   “Best Clockmaker on Mars”
7.   “All Said and Done”
8.   “Last Man Standing”
9.   “Mercury in Retrograde”
10. “Fastest Horse in Town”

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