Hear Sturgill Simpson’s Fuzzed-Out, Druggy Rocker, ‘Sugar Daddy’

By Cameron Matthews

One of the “Three Kings of Metamodern Country Music,” Sturgill Simpson, is back with a gnarly new tune. “Sugar Daddy” sounds like a drug-addled romp through slapback echo, Zeppelin distortion, and heavy blues. It’s also going to be the theme song for the upcoming HBO drama series, Vinyl, written and directed by Martin Scorsese and Mick Jagger.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the show’s music supervisors, Randall Poster and Meghan Currier, made absolutely sure that the studio equipment and instruments were all from the 1970s. The song itself — a semi-psychedelic fuzz fest — echoes the era of bell-bottoms, when rock ’n’ roll reigned supreme.

“Sugar Daddy” may sound like a departure from what Simpson has been up to lately — but it’s less of a stretch than you might think. His two solo records, 2013’s High Top Mountain and 2014’s Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, took a hard-edged approach to outlaw country — a genre that grew up and got a pistol permit in the 1970s. Simpson is taking that outlaw sound and applying it in a purely rock context here. It’s not his most listenable single, but it does make the singer’s future prospects look pretty exciting.

The first episode of Vinyl premieres February 14 on HBO.

Photo courtesy of Elli Papayanopoulos for BGS

Originally published at www.thebluegrasssituation.com on February 11, 2016.