It's been awhile since Atlanta was consumed with lust for all things Drive-By Truckers, the kind of frenzy former CL editor Tony Ware alluded to in a Nov. 30, 2005, edition of his late, lamented RedEye column. "The Drive-By Truckers look at something internal and eternal in the South and Southern rock; the songs explore how good men can do bad things but bad things don't have to overtake good men," he wrote.
Too bad the Truckers' last album, 2006's A Blessing and a Curse, didn't generate the same kind of passion from its fans. I thought the album was fine material, but it drew some criticism for being too mainstream Americana and not containing enough awe-inspiring Dirty South-sized visions.
Hell, I almost completely forgot that the band released a covers album with the great Bettye LaVette, The Scene of the Crime, earlier this fall. Judging from the dearth of local press, I'm not the only one, either. The Recording Academy did not, however, since it earned a 2008 Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album.
So let the band's upcoming opus, Brighter Than Creation's Dark, be a reminder of the great Truckers' considerable powers. It comes out via New West Records Jan. 22, just like the new albums from the Selmanaires, Anna Kramer and the Lost Cause, and the Whigs. Read the track listing below.
Perhaps mindful of the aforementioned criticism, the Athens band has excluded Atlanta from the first round of dates for its tour next year. You'll have to drive an hour-and-a-half to Athens to see them on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 11-12, at the 40 Watt. Boo-hoo!
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