Sturgill Simpson fans have come to expect the unexpected. After all, he went against typical roots country song topics with 2014's Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, delved further into his rock influences on 2016's A Sailor's Guide to Earth and slowed down a lucrative tour schedule to pursue an acting career. Yet even diehards must've been caught off guard on Saturday (July 20) when Simpson shared details for forthcoming album Sound & Fury.
The album, out this fall via Elektra Records, will coincide with a Netflix original anime film of the same name. Simpson worked with his San Diego Comic-Con co-panelists and Batman Ninja creators Jumpei Mizsaki and Takashi Okazaki to craft visuals to go along with his latest audio story.
A short teaser trailer offers fans a brief snippet of Simpson's new sound and his collaborators' animation style.
"We went in without any preconceived notions and came out with a really sleazy, steamy rock n roll record," says Simpson in a press release. "It's definitely my most psychedelic. And also my heaviest. I had this idea that it'd be really cool to animate some of these songs, and we ended up with a futuristic, dystopian, post-apocalyptic, samurai film."
During a March 2018 appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience, Simpson teased new music that's "definitely not country." That doesn't necessarily spell disaster for country music fans. Whether you find music through country radio or Americana underdogs, a little experimentation and a lot of rock riffs already pop up on your playlists from time to time.
As for the film, its Netflix release seems like a good strategy. Anime fans with little to no interest in Simpson's music can check it out at no extra cost, while music lovers less likely to watch an animated film can quench their curiosity for no more than their usual streaming service payment.