This choice for theme music, ‘Road to Hell’, has been around for a while. It’s hard to find a good recording of it online. A good recording is important; the song begins with the sounds of rain on a car and the sweep of wiper blades across the windshield.
The song’s sentiments, that we’re on a the road to hell, are reflected by various people and organizations. No matter the issues, politics or religions, who wins or who loses, someone will declare, this is the road to hell. Funny enough, every time I think of the road to hell, I think of a book by one of my favorite authors, Roger Zelazny, and ‘Damnation Alley’, which wasn’t a terrific novel. It’s appropriate to think of Zelazny and Rea together on a day like this, when surreal is the ‘word of the year’.
Back to the music, Chris Rea, ‘Road to Hell’, 1989. The song was originally listed as Parts I and II. Part I is like an essay with accompanying instruments:
Stood still on the highway
I saw a woman
by the side of the road
With a face I knew like my own
in my window.
Part II of Chris’ lyrics begins, “Well, I’m standing by a river, but the water doesn’t flow. It boils with every poison you can think of.” Too frequently, here in America, we’re encountering poisoned rivers and drinking supplies. Flint, Michigan leaps to mind, but a small city not far from my town has been enduring several months of boil and do not drink orders for their water supplies. Googling for such news turns up multiple more examples.
It does make one think, “Yeah, we’re on the road to hell.” Just in time for the holidays.