Whether Mike Cooley or Patterson Hood are at the helm of writing the lyrics, Drive-By Truckers have never been shy to express their opinions. Their songs frequently address the political and social ills that continue to plague America and the world and how the fucked-up decisions (or indecision) of our political leaders continue to put people at risk. Their latest single, “Thoughts and Prayers”, is no different.

On second thoughts, the song just might be the band at its angriest. The folk-rock melody may be soothing and inviting, but Hood’s lyrics are biting. He is forthright in his depiction of how the current White House administration cares little about the lives of Americans, but they instead appease those with deep pockets and self-interest. His anger is evident when he sings:

“When my children’s eyes look at me and they ask me to explain,
It hurts me that I have to look away.
The Powers That Be are in for shame and comeuppance.
When Generation Lockdown has their day,
Throw the bums all out and drain that swamp for real.
Purp walk them down the Capitol steps and show them how it feels.”

Although one line depicts the song’s meaning and the frustration felt by tens of millions of people. This should be a bumper sticker:

“Stick it up your ass with your useless thoughts and prayers.”

The song is filled with superb lines, which can be read on Hood’s Facebook page. He wrote the lyrics in 2018 following high school shootings in Parkdale, Florida and Santa Fe, New Mexico. These two incidents resulted in 27 lives being taken far too soon and another 31 injured. To this day, the US still has not passed meaningful law reform regarding guns.

Drive-By Truckers are Mike Cooley (vocals/guitar/bass/harmonica), Patterson Hood (vocals/guitar/bass), Matt Patton (bass/vocals), Jay Gonzalez (keys/guitar/vocals), and Brad Morgan (drums). Their new album, The Unraveling, arrives January 31st via ATO Records.

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