Artist, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Derek Simpson has crafted a distinctive niche in the music world. Released by Trailing Twelve Records on June 13, Simpson’s Saturn Returns is the first single on his forthcoming album, Somehow, from which one song will be released episodically every Thursday for ten weeks. Saturn Returns features a gently strummed rhythm guitar and swirling synths, creating a steady, ethereal backdrop for Simpson’s warm vocals.
As the opening track from Simpson's third album, it crystallises his experimental indie-pop approach. The lyrics ponder themes of kindness and connection, capturing a pensive but liberated perspective on the continuity of life and the impermanence of our current forms. His opening lines, “Put the spider outside / cause she’s not the enemy / they go, we go / brilliant sky / will you remember me? / day go, week go,” wander through the acknowledgement of nature’s cyclic constitution.
Simpson is from Boston but is now based in Los Angeles, California. He is celebrated for his layering of spacey guitar chords with dreamy synth lines. His music often explores themes of staying heartened amidst life's challenges, with thoughtful, introspective lyrics taking the stage in each of his tracks. His work has garnered acclaim from notable publications, including Spin, Indie Shuffle, Dummy, Glide, Ones to Watch, and Atwood Magazine. Popular culture has taken notice as well; Simpson’s music features in Comedy Central's series Workaholics and the film The Wheel, starring Amber Midhunter.
The song's visual narrative, captured in a stark black-and-white music video, mirrors its lyrical, ruminative nature. Rapid sequences show Simpson alongside his younger self outdoors, gazing into the distance, a reminder of the universality of experience. He is later alone as his adult self, leaving the shower, getting dressed, splitting wood—relatively ordinary activities, emphasising a bond with the environment and the meaning found in the “insignificant” day-to-day.