Drive-By Truckers | Go-Go Boots

ATO (2011)
By ZETH LUNDY  |  March 3, 2011
3.5 3.5 Stars

Drive-By Truckers 

I've argued that Drive-By Truckers — the definitive post-Southern-rock Southern-rock band — haven't been the same since parting ways with Jason Isbell, and their previous two releases serve as spotty Exhibits A and B. This ninth studio album finds long-timers Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley regaining their focus with their best set of narratives since 2006's A Blessing and a Curse. The songwriting's surgical focus is nothing new (Hood delves into characters; Cooley smuggles universal truth into one-liners), but the thirst for deep-rut Southern grooves is particularly insatiable this time out. Go-Go Boots is a "vibe" record for sure — you could call it Muscle Shoals derived, or the final realization of the country-soul sound the band have been flirting with for years, but to me it simply sounds lived in. From the snaking slide guitar that weaves its way through the Jesus-sleaze title track to the rich acoustic palette of "Cartoon Gold" and the surging cover of Eddie Hinton's country-fried R&B anthem "Everybody Needs Love," this stuff taps into a full array of American music lineage — effortlessly and naturally, like it ain't no thang. Released concurrently is The Secret to a Happy Ending, a DVD documentary that details the ups and downs of rock-band life, including that all-important dirt underneath.

  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, Drive-By Truckers, Drive-By Truckers,  More more >
| More

Most Popular
Share this entry with Delicious
    Bill Withers has always been the down-to-earth, odd-man-out of the '70s soul brothers: he's the one who came bearing a lunch box on the cover of his relaxed 1971 debut, Just as I Am .
  •   R.E.M. | DOCUMENT [25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION]  |  September 19, 2012
    Fans of R.E.M. enjoy arguing over which album was the band's true shark-jump, but 1987's Document was inarguably the end of a groundbreaking era.
  •   RICHARD HAWLEY | STANDING AT THE SKY'S EDGE  |  September 04, 2012
    Richard Hawley's seventh studio album opens with "She Brings the Sunlight," a clouds-parting, hippy-dippy drone explosion that plays like "Tomorrow Never Knows" caught in the echo of a football stadium.
  •   BOB MOULD | SILVER AGE  |  August 28, 2012
    Now that he's getting love as a godfather figure from both sides of the indie/mainstream divide (see No Age and Foo Fighters, for starters), Bob Mould is again playing like he has something to prove — or at least an iconography to maintain.
  •   RY COODER | ELECTION SPECIAL  |  August 14, 2012
    Ry Cooder's spur-of-the-moment (or is it heat-of-the-moment?) political album opens like any good political album should, with a rollicking blues song told from the point of view of Mitt Romney's dog.

 See all articles by: ZETH LUNDY