Drive-By Truckers have released a powerfully compelling video for the title track of their latest album, The New OK. Filmed in Portland, OR during the protests of summer 2020, the clip for “The New OK” mirrors DBT co-founder Patterson Hood‘s intense lyrics that address the period of accelerated dissolution America has entered.
The New OK was released via ATO Records at all DSPs and streaming services on Friday, October 2. The CD and red vinyl edition of the album will arrive on Friday, December 18.
The New OK marks the Drive-By Truckers’ 13th studio album and arrives mere months after the release of their highly lauded The Unraveling. Originally conceived as a quarantine EP collecting material recorded in Memphis during sessions for The Unraveling, the project expanded to include new powerful songs written and recorded over what Drive-By Truckers co-founder Patterson Hood describes as “this endless summer of protests, riots, political shenanigans and pandemic horrors.”
Tracks such as Hood’s “The New OK” and “Watching The Orange Clouds” – inspired by the protests following George Floyd’s murder – were exchanged between Hood, co-founding singer/songwriter/guitarist Mike Cooley, bassist Matt Patton, keyboardist Jay Gonzalez, drummer Brad Morgan, and then mixed by longtime DBT producer David Barbe. Bassist Patton offers vocals on The Ramones standard “The KKK Took My Baby Away.” Hood says it’s “a full album that hopefully balances out the darkness of our current situation with a hope for better days and nights ahead.”
“To call these past few months trying would be a dramatic understatement,” Hood continues. “Our lives are intertwined with our work in ways that give us our best songs and performances. It is a life that has often rewarded us beyond our wildest dreams. Speaking for myself, I don’t have hobbies, I have this thing I do. To be sidelined with a brand new album and have to sit idly while so much that I love and hold dear falls apart before my very eyes has been intense, heartbreaking, anger provoking and very depressing. It has gone to the very heart of our livelihoods and threatened near everything that we have spent our lives trying to build. Here’s to the hope that we can make 2021 a better year than this one has been. In the meantime, here’s to THE NEW OK!”
Of the title track, Hood says:
I wrote this song after attending a peaceful protest on July 25th in my adopted hometown of Portland, Oregon.
As I walked home, I couldn’t help but notice the people who were walking in the other direction. They seemed to have a very different intent than the people I had been marching with all evening.
I could hear the sounds of teargas canisters being launched against the protesters and a very different scene starting to take place… The New OK is not OK.
If you are looking for ways to help in Portland, please check out the Black Resilience Fund.
Watch the official video for “The New OK” below.
*Feature image credit: Jason Thrasher