Road Trip Rock
I suspect that many of you will be on the road this weekend. Since you'll be dealing with the frustrations of high gas prices and traffic, it's very important to have good tunes lined up. Here are five albums I plan on listening to at unsafe volume while driving to Pittsburgh, where I'll put myself through the torture of watching the Pirates lose a couple of games. Got any favorite driving albums? Feel free to share in the comments.
The Hold Steady - Separation Sunday Definitely my driving album of choice in recent years. Maybe that's not a good thing, though. I get so pumped listening to it and "singing" along with Craig Finn that I turn into a somewhat aggressive, impatient driver. So if you see someone weaving through lanes slightly above the speed limit (the Elantra only has so much pep) while shouting like a crazy person, that's probably me.
Clipse - Hell Hath No Fury
This album just keeps getting better and is an ideal hip-hop driving album. No skits, no filler tracks, a manageable number of guest spots. The Elantra's sound system doesn't deal well with big bass, but it does well enough with this one.
Creedence Clearwater Revival - Chronicle
I highly recommend this one if you're driving to the beach. As you get closer to the shore and the air becomes heavier and the humidity gets thicker, the swampiness of the tunes will feel all the more appropriate. If I could make one edit to the album, though, I'd ditch the 11-minute version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" for the not quite as long but plenty more rockin' and still plenty jammy "Ramble Tamble."
Silver Jews - American Water
I'll be embarking at dusk for one part of my trip and I can't think of a better sunset album. But I can't really think of a better anything album, of course. Stay tuned for an onslaught of Silver Jews coverage next month.
Grateful Dead - Winterland 1973
Serious Deadheads can make this 9-disc set last for more than a few long, strange trips since its run time is more than 10 hours. I can do without the 21-minute version of "Playing With the Band" or those interminable space jams. But when the band sticks to actual songs and keeps the jamming manageable, it's ideal cruising music, even for those of us that don't have one of those stupid dancing bear bumper stickers.
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