The Atmosphere Collection: Thunderstorm

Rykodisc, 1995

The Atmosphere Collection: Thunderstorm     Photo: Courtesy of Rykodisc

A quick Amazon search turns up more than 150 thunderstorm CDs. For sheer cardiac-arrest potential, none compare to this one. Released, inexplicably, on Rykodisc, a reissue label whose finest moment was making Frank Zappa’s catalog available in the early ’90s, Thunderstorm is World War Three in your living room. There is heavy rain, yes, and there are high winds, but the bone-cracking thunderclaps are the main event here, and they were recorded, mixed, and mastered entirely digitally—a rarity for nature recordings until only recently—which means that Thunderstorm is the next best thing to standing on the top of a Colorado fourteener in the middle of June, hoping to God your wedding ring doesn’t attract the wrong kind of attention.

DID YOU KNOW: Thunderstorm CDs have helped dogs suffering from brontophobia curb their urge to hide under the bed.

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