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Thursday, May 30, 2024
The independent student publication of The University at Buffalo, since 1950

Not just driving by

Grade: B+

Drive-By Truckers remind fans why they fell in love with the group as they drop their latest release, The Big To-Do. Clearly the big to-do for the band is to go back to its southern rock roots.
From the opening track, "Daddy Learned to Fly," the listener is hooked to the infectious guitar licks. The opening track evokes memories from DBT's breakthrough album, Southern Rock Opera.
The three guitars the band incorporates into its music gives the listener's ears plenty to digest even before Patterson Hood uses his vocal cords to demonstrate the song writing capability of the band.
As the listener is taken in by the soothing chords in "Daddy Learned to Fly," Hood sings the haunting lyrics he wrote about losing your father at a young age.
"They tell me that in time everything will be ok/Life gets back to normal like before he flew away/They say he can see me so I'm trying not to cry/But sometimes I can't help it since Daddy learned to fly," Hood sings.
Hood may have written the majority of the songs on The Big To-Do, but the first song written by guitarist Mike Cooley is one of the catchiest on the album.
The simplistic guitar chords, at least for DBT, make way for the tale of young southern hookers and nervous first timers.
"You got a girlfriend don't you boy?/Nervous hands cant lie/Married men don't ask how much/Single ones ain't buying/One day you got everything/Next day it's all broke/Let miss Trixie sit up front/Let her wipe your nose" Cooley sings.
The following song has the listener chuckling at the humorous fable about two friends looking for their missing friend whose old lady is less than pleased that he did not come home the night before.
"Better drag the lake Charlie/Charlie, drag the lake/Remember what happened last time Lester went on the make/I heard it took the cleaning crew two weeks to clean the bar/They never found that teenaged girl/They never found the car," Hood sings.
The Big To-Do continues to be more upbeat than most in DBT's repertoire as the album unfolds. The first song released for the album, "This F*cking Job," paints a picture that most everyone can relate to; the pure disdain they have for their job.
As the album draws to a close, DBT slows down the tempo but continues to show off the amazing song writing capability of the band.
Drive-By Truckers continues to impress as the Southern rock outpost make sure that people know that the big to-do is to go pick up this album.




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