Marcus King has released a new single produced by Rick Rubin. “F*ck My Life Up Again,” is King’s first collaboration with the legendary producer, and the duo’s respective styles meet to present a stunning track that broadens the bounds of King’s sonic arsenal. On his latest offering, the country star bares his deepest emotions over Rubin’s lush soul-tinged production in an arresting new direction for the performer.

King is known foremost as a guitar prodigy and son of the road for his inexhaustible touring with The Marcus King Band. On the record, his bluesy, virtuosic instrumental stylings tend to lead reserved vocals in a more traditional country-rock format, reminiscent of influences like Merle Haggard. The artist’s latest is something different altogether, foregoing his typical arrangements for a slick, R&B-tinged rhythmic backing layered with shimmering strings that radiate Rubin’s straightforward finesse. In fact, King’s guitar only makes its first appearance at the three-minute mark, where a virtuosic solo is tripped-out and reversed by Rubin to meet the song’s emotional climax.

The song’s most distinctive highlight is its emphasis on King’s singing, which spins a yarn of yearning and self-destruction in fervent, fiery tones. The artist is at his rawest here, showing distressed introspection and vocal prowess unmatched elsewhere in his catalog. “I was hesitant to record a song with such a foul word in it given my southern, Christian upbringing,” King stated, testifying to his arrival at a new horizon, “but there were no other words I could find to capture the emotion I felt, the anger associated with missing someone you know is only going to bring you pain, missing a relationship that only hurts you, feeling hopeless to the point of wanting them to come back because the only thing worse than the co-dependent hell you created together is the profound loneliness you feel.” His determination to capture this emotion has granted us an unforgettable window into the artist’s interiority.

“F*ck My Life Up Again” is available now on all streaming services.