Drive-by Truckers: Go-Go Boots

Country music done the right way.

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For 14 years and 11 albums, Drive-By Truckers have been producing everything that is right about modern country.

As far removed from the plastic smiles and sequinned camp of Nashville’s big hat-wearing acts as it’s possible to get, their grizzled, soulful take on the genre is as warm and comforting as a nice glass of good bourbon, while retaining enough rough and ready rockisms for a decent old time bar-room brawl.

The vocals veer from the wobbly whine of the laid back, engrossing literary murder ballad The Fireplace Poker to the chest-beating U2-with-soul, gospel-tinged drama of Everybody Needs Love. There’s the hints of musical theatre from the honeyed tones of Shonna Tucker on the heart-wrenching Where’s Eddie to the gruff, manly, sleazy Johnny Cash sentimentality of Cartoon Gold, adding up to a gorgeous palate of colour that’s as easy to slip into as a hot bath.

If you’ve resisted the charms of country rock so far, Go-Go Boots is a brilliant place to start if you feel like broadening your horizons.

Emma has been writing about music for 25 years, and is a regular contributor to Classic Rock, Metal Hammer, Prog and Louder. During that time her words have also appeared in publications including Kerrang!, Melody Maker, Select, The Blues Magazine and many more. She is also a professional pedant and grammar nerd and has worked as a copy editor on everything from film titles through to high-end property magazines. In her spare time, when not at gigs, you’ll find her at her local stables hanging out with a bunch of extremely characterful horses.