Drive-By Truckers Unravel Second Album of 2020

The venue and festival shutdowns in the wake of the Wu-Tang Flu hysteria spared a significant portion of the United States and Europe from Drive-By Truckers’ tour stops for their election year meltdown album, The Unraveling, released on January 31. But perennial spokesman Patterson Hood – an absolute mendacious hunk of shit who’s declined to acknowledge the violence and destruction of the nightly Antifa/BLM mobs in Portland, where he currently lives, but had the unmitigated gall to ask, “Why are Trump’s Goonsquad tear gassing Mommies???” when homeland security stepped in to defend federal buildings there – is physically incapable of shutting down his yammering mouth, so here we have another album from the DBTs, the digital edition of which was made available with little advance warning Oct. 2, “just in time for the election,” as the press release noted – because of course we’ve all been desperately waiting to hear some bitter ex-Southerner wisdom from Hood and Co. before we go cast our votes. Aaaaahhh…just in time!

The New OK was originally envisioned as an EP of outtakes from Memphis recording sessions for The Unraveling, including the song of that name (sung by bassist Matt Patton), Mike Cooley’s “Sarah’s Flame” (both of those tracks were released on a 7-inch single for the late August Record Store Day drop) and a cover of The Ramones’ “The KKK Took My Baby Away,” also sung by Patton. The project was then padded out with newly written original material recorded between the members long-distance style over the summer and mixed by David Barbe in Athens. CD and red vinyl versions, via ATO Records, will be released through retailers on Dec. 18 – by which time the presidential election ballots may have been counted, discounted, lost and/or found, and we’ll all be eagerly anticipating Patterson Hood’s thoughts on the matter.

In other news, the Truckers’ 2009 Live From Austin, TX album (taken from their appearance on Austin City Limits) was released on vinyl for the first time Oct. 23 by New West Records. And all of the DBTs’ albums for that label (2003’s Decoration Day through 2009’s “oddities and rarities” collection The Fine Print) will be reissued in limited-edition colored vinyl editions on Nov. 20.

Photo by Jason Thrasher.