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Drive-By Truckers – The Unraveling (2020) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Drive-By Truckers – The Unraveling (2020)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 42:24 minutes | 937 MB | Genre: Alternative, Indie
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © ATO (UK)

Drive-By Truckers have announced the release of their much-anticipated new album. The Unraveling arrives on Friday, January 31, 2020.

Drive-By Truckers’ 12th studio album and first new LP in more than three years – the longest gap between new DBT albums – The Unraveling was recorded at the legendary Sam Phillips Recording Service in Memphis, TN by GRAMMY® Award-winning engineer Matt Ross-Spang (Jason Isbell, Margo Price) and longtime DBT producer David Barbe. Co-founding singer/songwriter/guitarists Mike Cooley and Patterson Hood both spent much of the time prior doing battle with deep pools of writer’s block. “How do you put these day to day things we’re all living through into the form of a song that we (much less anybody else) would ever want to listen to?” says Hood. “How do you write about the daily absurdities when you can’t even wrap your head around them in the first place? I think our response was to focus at the core emotional level. More heart and less cerebral perhaps.”

As Joe Strummer once told us, anger can be power, but what Joe didn’t mention is that it tends to burn hot and fast. Once it’s gone, what’s left? At what point do you run out of productive rage and find yourself weighed down by the ashes of hopelessness and defeat? When the Drive-By Truckers wrote and recorded 2016’s American Band, the United States was a nation ankle-deep in the rising waters of racism and division, with the presidential campaign of Donald Trump just a troubling roadside curiosity. In the truest sense, 2020’s The Unraveling is the companion piece to American Band, an update where tragically little has gotten better four years on, and our national malaise is greater than ever. This set of songs is rooted in frustration with a broken culture, where our leaders put children in concentration camps, mass shootings come and go with only the most futile gestures towards a solution, the rich get richer and the poor work harder for their scraps, folks turn to opiates to block out the pain and the noise, young men give themselves over to misogyny and race hatred, and no happy ending is visible on the horizon. On The Unraveling, the Drive-By Truckers stare deep into America’s soul and report what they’ve seen, with genuine compassion but no illusions. Simply put, this is the darkest and least fun album the DBT’s have made to date, one that makes American Band look light-hearted in contrast, and more than ever before, they struggle with the weight of questions that aren’t just important, they’re necessary, but with no simple answers offered by themselves or anyone else. Musically, The Unraveling is superb, delivering some of the most potent and nuanced performances this band has ever summoned, with Patterson Hood’s and Mike Cooley’s guitars speaking as clearly as the lyrics, drummer Brad Morgan and bassist Matt Patton laying down rhythms like the footfalls of an angry ghost, and Jay Gonzalez keying up the texture with his keyboards and guitars. While Hood and Cooley, the DBT’s songwriters, have always impressed with their gift for telling stories and creating vivid characters, they’ve rarely merged words and music quite as skillful as they have here. This doesn’t rock very often, but it’s a hard-edged and vivid work that packs a tremendous emotional punch. The Unraveling is a dire yet vivid depiction of the American zeitgeist at a crucial time in the nation’s history, and a decisive collection of songs these musicians clearly wish they didn’t have to write. ~ Mark Deming


1. Rosemary with a Bible and a Gun (03:29)
2. Armageddon’s Back in Town (03:48)
3. Slow Ride Argument (03:19)
4. Thoughts and Prayers (05:21)
5. 21st Century USA (04:14)
6. Heroin Again (03:54)
7. Babies in Cages (05:33)
8. Grievance Merchants (04:08)
9. Awaiting Resurrection (08:38)


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