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This Is a Long Drive For Someone With Nothing To Think About

4.6 out of 5 stars 109 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 9, 1996
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Frontman Isaac Brock's claim that he's being stalked by his own alter ego was not the first bit of evidence that Modest Mouse isn't your usual pop band. Witness the entirety of this 1996 indie debut from the Washington trio that inspired a major-label bidding war. This Is a Long Drive for Someone with Nothing to Think About finds Brock cruising with cohorts Eric Judy and Jeremiah Green (plus an occasional cellist) through a landscape of intoxicatingly original lo-fi tunes. Sure, Brock's early vocals make Nikki Sudden sound like one smooth crooner, but their strained quality offset the primitive elegance of his guitar work, giving a passionate vulnerability to "Breakthrough," "Custom Concern," and other treatises on life in the lost lane. --Bill Forman
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 9, 1996)
  • Original Release Date: April 16, 1996
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Up Records
  • ASIN: B000003L1P
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,213 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Did you ever buy one of those albums that, after owning it for a few weeks, you realize you haven't even heard 3/4 of the songs yet? Reason being, at least in the case of albums like "This Is A Long Drive...", you've gotton so much enjoyment out of just the first few songs you haven't felt a need to listen to the rest of the material yet. These are The Great Records, and I can count the number that I've listened to on one hand.
In all honesty, "Dramamine", "Breakthrough", and "Custom Concern" (tracks 1, 2, and 3) were on constant repeat in my car CD player for over a week before I even thought about listening to anything else, and even though I've moved on to the rest of the album since then, I think these three epitomize everything fascinating and wonderful about Modest Mouse. Moving from the trance-inducing "Dramamine" to the gleefully psychotic "Breakthrough" to the yearning country twang of "Custom Concern" is a disarmingly impressive flex of musical range, and these kids pull it off almost flawlessly.
Given the quality of "This Is A Long Drive...", it's suprising that Modest Mouse didn't find critical success until the release of it's follow-up "The Lonesome Crowded West". It's possible that because of this, "This Is A Long Drive..." has been excluded from indie-rock fans' "must buy" lists. Well put it on there mister, because you must buy this album.
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Format: Audio CD
Here is what I have to say: This is my favorite Modest Mouse album. This album captures to total perfection what it feels like to be sad and cold but at the same time filled with a sweet appreciation for your own existence. There is such a fantastic reality to be found here. This will always be at the top for me. There is a good section of my life in which this is the definitive soundtrack. The music can be so bare but masterfull it makes you want to scream. Like living in a sparse cold room that you still find beautiful. If you want good music then, here, take this.
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Format: Vinyl
It's hard to know where to start. The first time I heard "This is a long drive..." I didn't know what to think. I was pretty young when this record came out, and it was sort of disorienting. Many years passed before I heard it again. A few friends and I were making our way to the beach to catch the sunset, we were laughing and talking and someone slipped this album into the CD player. "Dramamine", was only a few seconds in and the car went quiet. I remember the driving steady bass line, the distorted guitar and the deliberate rolling drumbeat. It was mesmerizing. I kept hearing the song in my head long after the night ended.

Soon after I bought the CD, but finding this album on vinyl didn't even occur to me at the time. Needless to say I loved it. A few other songs took more getting used to, and if you're anything like me skipping ahead to certain songs and repetitively playing my favorites meant not giving a lot of what's offered here enough attention. Slowly but surely tracks like "She Ionizes & Atomizes" and "Novocain Stain" went from songs that I would skip, to songs that I would skip to. The lyrics of tracks like "Custom Concern" and "Talking S*** About a Pretty Sunset" left me reeling. It was the songs that I originally overlooked that have really stuck with me and hardly a day goes by that I don't play "Space Travel Is Boring" while reminiscing on my way to work.

When I saw that Glacial Pace was re-releasing this album as well as a few others by Modest Mouse on vinyl I took the plunge. Let me say I do not regret the decision. I can listen to any of these songs any time I would like on Spotify, or Youtube but hearing this album again in this format really slowed me down.
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Format: Audio CD
When I first listened to this CD, I have to admit I turned it right off. I was brand new to Modest Mouse; I had only heard their 'Good News' cd and this older, rougher, less popish Modest Mouse did not appeal to me. It sounded too 'screechy', too noisy, just not something I could deal with. This is because sometimes Isaac's voice just needs some getting used to. He can sing low, but he seems to enjoy singing very high, and some people just can't get used to that.

Thankfully I have adapted, and all of his words are sweet music to me.

This CD isn't for anyone who, like myself at once, have only heard the 'Good News' CD. Please go try 'Moon & Antarctica' first. In fact, it's really best to do all the CDs backwards. Doing this allows you to 'ease' into Modest Mouse's older music. And my god is it worth it.

Their lyrics are beautiful, the songs are great, and to be honest almost everything of their old songs are so much greater than their newest CD. This CD has some highly addictive songs with catchy lyrics and funky beats that just make you want to sing along, provided you can catch all the words your first listen-through.

So while this CD is not for everyone, it is definitely something you should look into if you think you have gotten comfortable with Modest Mouse's older sound. If you can get past that, then this CD is a gem.
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