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by Stephanie Benson

August 19, 2011

Music for Airplanes

by Stephanie Benson  |  August 19, 2011

Ah, to partake in the miracle of flight. We all love to bitch about it, don't we? Louis C.K.'s bit on the absurdity of our whining really sums it up best: "'Ugh. But I had to pay for a sandwich.' You're flying! You're sitting in a chair in the sky! You're like a Greek myth right now! . . . New York to California in six hours! It used to take 30 years to do that, and a bunch of you would die on the way there!" This is all so true, but when you start thinking about your life being in the hands of unidentified pilots as you float up some tens of thousands of feet, you're bound to get a little edgy.

This is when Rhapsody becomes crucial. Once I hear those soothing words -- "you are now clear to use approved electronic devices" -- the headphones quite literally fly on. What helps me relax are songs and sounds with a rich, narcotic flow -- Radiohead, Four Tet, Portishead, the xx and M83, to name a few go-to artists. Anything to help lull me into a peaceful stupor (if only that kid would just stop kicking my seat already). This mixtape is lengthy enough for a cross-country flight, so sit back and enjoy the ride.

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