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The 10 Best Americana Albums of 2007

If 2007 didn't invite any gripping controversies, it was certainly filled with competitive comparisons -- between young and old, past and present, and among splintered factions -- and both surprising hits and disappointing misses. All in all, a dynamic and at times resurgent year for the broad scope of Americana.

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Drive-By Truckers: It's Great to be Alive!

Consider It's Great to be Alive! a formal invitation to the perpetual Rock Show that is the Drive-By Truckers.

Music

Drive-By Truckers - "Runaway Train" (Live) (Singles Going Steady)

This early pre Drive-By track shows how the band’s music has always been firmly rooted in keeping a pulsating beat.

Music

Jay Gonzalez: The Bitter Suite

Gonzalez's focus on power pop sets him apart from his fellow Drive-By Truckers' solo projects, which makes it more interesting.

Music

Jason Isbell: Something More Than Free

While it doesn't quite have the thunderous impact of Southeastern, Something More Than Free confirms that Jason Isbell is a rare talent.

Music

High Fidelity: Jay Gonzalez and the Crowdsourcing Renaissance

Jay Gonzalez may be one of the more familiar faces of the Drive-By Truckers, but with a expansive new EP, he reflects on the sheer delight of crowdsourcing as a musician.

Eric Risch
Music

Andrew Bryant - "Do What You Love" (audio) (Premiere)

The latest tune by the Water Liars drummer Andrew Bryant comes from "more than enough nights in a Motel 6 to last a lifetime".

Music

The 100 Best Albums of the 2000s: 60-41

PopMatters' coverage of the 2000s' best recordings continues with selections spanning Swedish progressive metal to minimalist electro-R&B.

Music

The 100 Best Albums of the 2000s: 80-61

In this next segment of PopMatters' look back on the music of the 2000s, we examine works by British electronic pioneers, Americana legends, and Armenian metal provocateurs.

Music

Counterbalance: Jason Isbell's 'Southeastern'

You should know compared to people on a global scale our kind has had it relatively easy. Jason Isbell gets that -- and a lot more as well. His 2013 release is this week’s Counterbalance.

Music

Our Jason Isbell, Ourselves

Jason Isbell delivered one of the strongest records in 2013, and in doing so, he helped redefine the parameters of Americana.

Music

Drive-By Truckers: English Oceans

Drive-By Truckers have lost a songwriter and a guitarist since their last album, but English Oceans finds them adjusting with aplomb and turning out another strong record.

Reviews

Drive-By Truckers: 7 November 2013 - Bloomington, IN

Drive-By Truckers's performance at the Bluebird Nightclub in Bloomington, Indiana was a total triumph -- raucous, profound and very, very loud.

Music

Shonna Tucker and Eye Candy: A Tell All

The former bassist for Drive-By Truckers exceeds expectations with a strong debut album that mixes country, southern rock, and pop.

Music

Mike Cooley: The Fool on Every Corner

The Drive-By Truckers other singer steps out with a solo album of acoustic versions of his Truckers songs. His decision to accompany himself solely on finger-picked guitar reveals exactly which of his songs are strongest, and which are second-tier.

Music

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit: Live from Alabama

Is it cheating when your best album is a live release that covers your entire career?

Events

A Ghost to Most: An Evening with Mike Cooley of Drive-By Truckers

Through his humor, his unflinching narrative eye, and his mastery of the common syllable, Mike Cooley is a unique poetic voice unlike any other in contemporary rock ‘n’ roll.

Jason Leahey
Music

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit - “Danko Manuel” (video)

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit's latest album, 'Live From Alabama', releases 20 November and this live take of “Danko Manuel” appears on the new record. The tune is a tribute to the Band from the much heralded LP The Dirty South from Isbell's former band, Drive By Truckers.

Music

Patterson Hood: Heat Lightning Rumbles in the Distance

The Drive-By Trucker frontman's third solo album is his best sustained work in years, an immensely satisfying release woven together from relationships past and present, wrecked and whole.

Music

Jay Gonzalez: Mess of Happiness

The Drive-By Truckers keyboardist establishes himself as a secret pop threat on a solo debut that sounds nothing like Hood, Cooley and company.

Reviews

Drive-By Truckers: 1 September 2011 - Austin, TX

The excitement brought about by getting the chance to see Drive-By Truckers in this kind of rare mode was something worth bragging about.

Ryan Lester
Music

Here We Rest: A Conversation with Jason Isbell

Three records and a few hundred shows into his solo career, former Drive-By Trucker Jason Isbell seems to have found his groove.

Reviews

Drive-By Truckers + The Henry Clay People: 24 September 2010 - Austin, TX

The Henry Clay People and Drive-By Truckers might seem like a bit of a mismatch at first glance, but both bands feature a high energy, guitar-driven sound and heartfelt vocals that strike a chord with the soul.

Greg M. Schwartz
Reviews

Sasquatch Music Festival: 29 May 2010 - George, WA

I’m continually asked who the best performer was at the fest. Maybe the fact that I can’t really answer the question is a testament to the power of Sasquatch. All good things do come to an end, but all great things do come back, year after year.

Joshua Kloke
Music

Drive-By Truckers: The Big To-Do

The reigning champs of the down-and-out release their soundtrack to the Great Recession.

Music

Drive-By Truckers: Live from Austin TX

Live from Austin TX is still an excellent document of a great rock 'n roll band doing what it does best.

Music

Righteous Paths

The Drive-By Truckers' live shows once played like a songwriters-in-the-round session with electric guitars and increasingly empty bottles of Jack Daniels. Then Jason Isbell came along -- and it only got better.

Reviews

Drive-By Truckers: 19 March 2008 - Toronto

These days, the Drive-By Truckers are nearly revolutionary in their refusal to treat their music as ironic, as some kind of joyless, angsty joke. No, the Truckers live for this stuff.

Stuart Henderson
Music

Drive-By Truckers: The Burrs in Rock 'n' Roll’s Saddle

The Truckers earned universal acclaim for their well-crafted rock albums and raucous live shows, but 2008 marks a new era. PopMatters talks with Mike Cooley and Patterson Hood.

Andy Tennille
Music

Drive-By Truckers: Brighter Than Creation's Dark

Although they haven't lost a step since Jason Isbell left, the Drive-By Truckers' seventh album doesn't know when to say when.

Music

Jason Isbell: Sirens of the Ditch

Debut solo album from ex-Drive-By Trucker is a slickly produced record of conservative hard rock and country-tinged balladry whose polish floats a little too far from his former band's grungier orbit.

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