Hurricane Harvey is slamming the Texas coast right now. You wouldn’t be able to tell by looking out your window if you live in San Antonio, but I digress. As I woke up this morning to the pitter patter of raindrops on our windowsill, a strange feeling poured over me. “Hm,” I thought, “I could really go for some Pink Floyd.” So since my wife and I are going to be stuck inside indefinitely for the next 48 hours, I figured I’d pick out some albums that go perfectly with a relatively cold, rainy day. They’re not in any particular order, so you can listen to them in whatever arrangement you like.
Pink Floyd – Animals
Animals is one of the greatest albums of all time from one of the greatest bands of all time. It has a little bit of everything – rock, metal, jazz, blues…barnyard animal noises…all without feeling too cluttered. Animals really pushed the boundaries of what music could be in 1977, and is the ultimate Pink Floyd album. It’s not quite as concept-y as The Wall, but it’s not quite as balls-trippingly crazy as Dark Side of the Moon. It’s an album of five songs, five intricate masterpieces that are absolutely perfect for a rainy day.
Modest Mouse – The Lonesome Crowded West
Any band from the most rainy state in the US is going to make great music for a rainy day. I got this album and This Is a Long Drive For Someone With Nothing To Think About for Kelsey last Christmas, and they’ve really helped me grow to like Modest Mouse more. Not that I wasn’t a fan before, it’s just all I’d heard was Good News for People Who Love Bad News in 7th grade and associated Modest Mouse with listening to ‘Float On’ on VH1 in the morning before school. It takes some getting used to, sure, but the raindrops hitting my window right now are melting in perfectly with Isaac Brock’s experimental, punky vocals and guitar.
The Doors – LA Woman
I picked this album for one song in particular: ‘Riders on the Storm.’ But that’s not to say the rest of the album doesn’t sit well in a rainy day soundtrack. ‘LA Woman,’ ‘Love Her Madly,’ ‘The W.A.S.P.,’ ‘L’america’…every song on this album fits snugly into the puzzle that is LA Woman, and the album was an excellent swan song for the late, great Jim Morrison. The Doors were one of the best blues bands of the ’60s and ’70s, and LA Woman exemplifies that fact perfectly. If you’re looking for something a little bit rocky, a little bit sad, and a whole lot awesome, this is the perfect album to break up those other ‘sad’ rainy day tunes.
Angel Olsen – Burn Your Fire for No Witness
I heard about Angel Olsen on NPR about six months ago. When I went onto Amazon to see which album I might be interested in getting, one of the reviews read something like ‘This is the whitest music I’ve ever heard. Typical white girl singer/songwriter that they play on NPR.” Harsh, sure, but overall… pretty true. That doesn’t mean I don’t like it, though. Angel’s voice is absolutely (sorry) angelic. Add to that sweeping guitar chords and calm progressions, and you’ve got a collection of absolutely beautiful songs that’ll help transport you to another plane of existence any day – especially rainy ones. Check out her newest album, MY WOMAN, too, if you’re interested. It’s a little more rocky and mature than Burn Your Fire, but with just as much attitude.
Bob Dylan – The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan
You can’t have a rainy day playlist without an acoustic guitar, so let’s go with some folk music. Add to the acoustic guitar a few protest songs about the horrors of war and the evils of mankind, a few dashes of heartbreak, and a splash of rebellion, and you’ve got yourself The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. This is one of Bob’s greatest albums, in my opinion. I know it’s kind of scandalous to claim that one Dylan album is better than another, but I’ll take the leap. The poetry on here is breathtaking. The guitar playing is other worldly. The entire album is a masterpiece, and I can’t wait to get this on my turntable.
Well, there you have it. Kind of a short one today, but I’m trying to get back in the swing of writing now that I’m back from vacation. How do you feel about my selection of rainy day albums? What are your go-to’s for a rainy day? Leave me a comment and let me know.