Drive-By Truckers are one of the most prolific groups, generally dropping albums every couple of years. However, the release of The Unraveling came a whole 40 months after their previous set. The reason for the delay was, in part, a case of writer's block suffered by co-frontman Patterson Hood.
Hood's breakthrough came while walking from the band bus to a nearby diner for some breakfast during a day off in a Wyoming small town. Inspired by the place, which seemed to be in the middle of nowhere, Hood came up with lyrics about an economically depressed rural location whose population is "working hard for shrinking pay." Scrawling his melancholy observations on a napkin, his song idea opened the floodgates for the other Unraveling tracks.
Lily Allen wrote "Something's Not Right" for the soundtrack of the Peter Pan prequel, Pan. The song was inspired by the heartache that Allen experienced after suffering a miscarriage when she was six months pregnant with her first child by husband Sam Cooper in 2010.