Whether by car or on foot, making your way through the towering white peaks of the alps, or along the winding ribbon road of the Munroe’s, is one of the most atmospheric and awe-inspiring experiences. The sense of size and power that they emanate, the crushing quietness, is something that draws travellers back time and time again. It’s easy to see how anyone could become hooked, the jagged skyline a constant reminder of the raw strength of the natural world.
I’ve always found my experiences outside have linked instrincally with music. Songs depict images of deep sunsets seen, or serve as a throwback to the unbridled joy of standing knee deep in snow. They join me on walks, and bike rides, a gentle presence, company. To go on any trip without by travelling playlist would be blasphemy.
If you’re like me, and appreciate a gentle soundtrack to your outdoor adventures, here’s fifteen ‘must listens’ that deserve a place on every travelling playlist.
1. Simply The Best – Noah Reid.
An elegant and timeless acoustic version of a world famous power ballad, I have been known to play this track on repeat. The gentle lilt of a guitar, the almost poetic lyrics – it’s the ultimate way to get in touch with your softer side, and there is no place better to do that than under an open sky.
2. Land Of The Living – Roo Panes
The best of Roo Panes three EPs, land of the living speaks to something deep inside of us that is looking for an open road and no obligations. The part of us that wants to cherish every moment we have on the world is celebrated in this beautiful and loving song.
3. This Year – The Mountain Goats
Whenever I listen to This Year, I am transported back to seventeen year old strife and heartbreak. Never more relevant, This Year talks of just making it through to the next one ‘if it kills me’. John Darnielle, the leader singer, has a unique voice that few could make work and yet it seems to fit perfectly with The Mountain Goats style.
4. Coastline – Hollow Coves
Summer sunsets, with the crackling of the fire and the gentle whisper of a glassy ocean. Coastlines by Hollow Coves is as soft as it is stunning, and will have you reminiscent of childhood holidays in far off beach-side destinations. Listened through once, it is a reminded to not always trod the beaten path, and to choose your own way in life. Another firm favourite, I could listen to this song every day without growing tired.
5. Plough and Orion – Skinny Lister
6. Too Young To Burn – Sonny & The Sunsets
Have you ever watched Valley Uprising? Then you may have heard this song.
We’ve all felt this way, too young to burn, and having a reminded that this childish attitude to life is as exciting as it is understandable. With the melodic harmonies, lilting guitar and soft slide into quietness, Sonny & The Sunsets have created an atmospheric song perfect for any winding mountain road.
7. Run With Me – Hudson Taylor
8. If I Was – Young Rebel Set
A lesser know indie folk band from Teesside, England, all of Young Rebel Set’s music is available on Spotify and what a treat it is. With tales of hardship, of hurt and of over whelming love, this song pulls at the heart strings like no other. When hearing it live, I’m not ashamed to say that I shed a tear or two.
9. Holy – Frightened Rabbit
10. Silver Lining – Mt. Joy
An ode to cherish all the little joys in life, Mt Joy have created something in Silver Lining that inspires living every day to the full. Best listened to, beer in hand, at the top of a mountain.
My brother, let the heart just beat
Drink your wine, smoke your weed
This song has got me through some of the best, and the worst, holidays. It’s done cooking curry with a view across the Scottish highlands, a hungover drive down from Glencoe after two nights skiing, a 16 hour drive from North Yorkshire to Fontainebleau, and I have no doubt it will continued to hold a very precious place on my road trip playlist for a very long time.
Whatever your roadtrip jam, whether it indie folk anthems like me or hard rock classics, getting away and turning on the radio is the cure-all to life’s hardships. Each song you add can be a promise to visit somewhere else, specifically picked for a particular journey or drive – now is the time to do it, when staycations are the hot new thing and we’re all exploring our country a little more. Why not give these ten a listen, and make your own ultimate roadtrip playlist for mountain travelling?