By Ian Bremner
Sturgill Simpson is the reason I am conflicted when people ask, “do you like country music?” In its essence, hell yeah!, but the questioner usually is referring to the flag wavin’, tailgate hangin’, red solo cup drinkin’, sorority creepin’, sandal wearin’ man boys filling the airwaves and hijacking a whole genre. I usually respond with a “Nah, not really” only to avoid sounding like an asshole who has to explain that I’m more your dad’s-type country fan. I’ll listen to Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings ‘till the cows come home (that’s a country phrase, y’all). Sturgill is in rare company.
Anyone foolish enough to give me reigns of the music choice in the car, BBQs or family get-togethers in the last 6 weeks, has been subjected to Sturgill Simpson. As the album title may suggest, Metamodern Sounds In Country Music ranges from themes of cosmic theories and obscure religious beliefs to the hardly recognizable cover of When In Rome’s, The Promise, to the full blown psychedelicountry jam, It Ain’t All Flowers.
The album starts with the lead single, Turtles All the Way Down, which references the myth held by several historical cultures that believe a giant tortoise carries the weight of the flat world on its shell though space. As he describes in the video below, it is a pretty legitimate way to say, we’re all full of it so just be nice to people.
Keep your cursor near the triangular ‘Play” button. If you can find the elusive LP, you’ll be flipping it over back and forth like you’re rolling pizza crust filled with whatever substance Sturgill is on.