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Review: Sturgill Simpson’s Sound And Fury Anime Experiment On Netflix Is (Intentionally) Wild And Weird

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BY April 29, 2020
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Netflix’s original Anime list is growing. But nothing is as quirky and completely off-the-wall weird as Sturgill Simpson’s Sound And Fury Anime. Created as a supplement to Sturgill’s music album of the same name, Sound And Fury is an intense experiment in cross-media pollination that works. Weirdly enough.

Who Is Sturgill Simpson? 

Sturgill Simpson is a Grammy-winning American country music singer and songwriter. But while listening to the Sound And Fury album, the descriptor of ‘country’ might cause many to scratch their heads. That’s because most of the tracks and the album itself sounds anything but country. And it’s an intentional effort by the award-winning songwriter. 

Sturgill Simpson’s Sound And Fury: The Music Album

Sturgill Simpson's Sound And Fury Poster Sturgill Simpson's Sound And Fury Image via Netflix

Simpson reinvented his own style with various inspirations for his fourth studio album. But he gets more than just jiggy with the whole thing. Simpson cites inspirations like Eminem, Black Sabbath and various styles of hip hop. Sound And Fury is Simpson’s homage and amalgamation of these various styles of music into a cohesive narrative of rhythm and song.

Critics have called the album everything from a blend of Blues Rock, Synth-Rock and Boogie Rock. But the album isn’t the only thing where Simpson experiments. 

Sturgill Simpson’s Sound And Fury: The Insane Netflix Anime

Netflix has been host to much different anime, both original like Seis Manos, and licensed like the upcoming Ghost In The Shell. So when thinking about how to take this musical experiment even further, Simpson didn’t have to look far. Simpson decided on supplementing the music with a massive long-form music video, in the form of an Anime on Netflix. 

Sound And Fury is 41 minutes of the most insane Anime-style action and psychedelic music trip that I’ve personally ever seen. The story, if that, begins with a Samurai, hell-bent on revenge. A dystopia ruled by an evil corporation-like hierarchy is responsible for the murder of the Samurai’s near and dear. So revenge ensues. And then everything else also lets loose. 

Sound And Fury Anime Is An Extended Music Video

That story narrative of Sturgill Simpson’s Sound And Fury Anime ends when the first track of the album does. Everything else is a hyper-fast and intensely furious barrage of images that are breathtaking and completely outrageous. The cyber-punk Samurai elements are cool as hell. Along with the totally 60’s elements of imagery and neon colors. 

While the villains are basically the Anime version of Mad Max: Fury Road-style car chase sequences. But on an even more wild trip. The animation is also a blend of various Japanese anime, making even the visuals vary from sequence to sequence. 

The Sound And Fury Anime Actually Works

Simpson’s experiment works because it’s a great way to showcase his music, without the limits of the live-action music video. As critics have mentioned, by combining with the artistic elements of a style of animation known for taking as many risks and this album, it’s a marriage made in a recording studio heaven.

Sturgill Simpson’s Sound And Fury is now streaming on Netflix. 

What did you think of the out-there style of the Sound And Fury anime? 

Anime NewsanimeCountry SingerMusic VideoNetflixSamuraiSound And FurySturgill Simpson

Shah Shahid is an entertainment writer, movie critic (so he thinks), host of the Split Screen Podcast (on Apple Podcasts & everywhere else) and filmy father on a mission to educate his girls on decades of film history. Armed with uncontrollable sarcasm and cautious optimism, Shah loves discussing film, television and comic book content until his wife’s eyes glaze over. So save her by engaging him on his own blog at BlankPageBeatdown.com or on Twitter @theshahshahid.

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