Concert Pick: Drive-By Truckers @ 9:30 Club (2/28/20 & 2/29/20)

The southern rock act is touring their new album, The Unraveling, and bringing their show to the 9:30 Club for two nights this week.

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Drive-By Truckers (Photo from FB @drivebytruckers, photo cred: @sanjaysuchak)

Drive-By Truckers have been bringing their unique take on southern rock to the masses since 1998 – over twenty years now, with their new album marking number 12 in the discography. The Unraveling was released just a few weeks ago and has continued their reflection on the anxiety of our times; a thread that has long been present in DBT’s music, but lurched forward on the last album, American Band, released in 2016.

For as long as I can remember living in DC, Drive-By Truckers have been coming around every couple years and setting up for a night or two at the 9:30 Club. I’ve been lucky enough to see them two or three times over the years – all at the 9:30 – and each show has been an encapsulation of everything that makes them great. Long sets full of songs you know and songs you don’t (it’s a large catalog!) where the ones you don’t know are as good as the ones you do; loud shows that feel like classic, solid rock n’ roll in your bones; and song writing coming from next-level songwriters.

DBT never feels showy. They tuck in their virtuosity and their lyrical skill, and they leave it there for you to uncover on the third, fifth, eighth, fifteenth listen. The turns of phrase, the buried references, the musical callbacks; and more so now, the political, protest bent. They are easy to listen to, because they’re so good, but they pack a lot under a shiny hood. Liminal and subliminal, they bring two games to play and give you your choice on how to proceed.

Saturday is sold out, but Friday has tickets available as of this writing. Tickets are $35. Get them here.

Doors are at 8pm. Buffalo Nichols opens.

“Thoughts and Prayers” (from The Unraveling)

Author: Mathew Harkins

A writer and editor in Washington, DC.

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