Drive-By Truckers – Live from Austin, TX

I think I'm obligated by law to tell you this image is copyright of cornershopstudios.com. But I'm a lawbreaker, so I won't tell you that. I'm so naughty.

Review time! Again. This time, I finally get to review a Drive-By Truckers album, and do so effusively. Purple Prose Power!

In the spirit of full disclosure, I should probably inform you of two things:

1 – I’m a hard marker. In the time I’m writing for this website, you’ll likely never see me give an album 10/10. This is partly because I don’t think you could reasonably call any album absolutely perfect, but mostly because I’m a qualified miserablist who is dead to joy. So an album that gets a high mark, but fails to hit the zenith, probably only falls short on the basis that I’m hideously cynical.

2 – The Drive-By Truckers are the closest thing I have to a favourite band. I don’t think Mike Cooley has ever written a song that was anything less than excellent, and they remain the only band that I’ve travelled beyond Dublin to see (I saw them in Manchester last August). So I’m not going to pretend this review isn’t somewhat biased. Rest assured however, that the Truckers have earned that bias by releasing five of the best rock albums of this young milennium – one of which was a double album, and another that was long enough to be one.

So it’s with the utmost confidence, and with as much critical distance as I can muster up, that I tell you this is a truly fantastic live album. The reason I say this can be handily summed up by this sentence: The Drive-By Truckers are the finest live band rock n’ roll can lay claim to right now. They say three is the magic number? The Truckers have three songwriters, three lead singers and three great guitarists. They couldn’t fail to be brilliant. (Unless, like me, you don’t believe in magic, in which case, feel free to attribute their brilliance to an abundance of talent and intelligence, which is probably more accurate anyway.)

So be a dear, and go read it. It all goes to charity. (It doesn’t really go to charity.)

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