Mark Knopfler, "Get Lucky"
Fifteen years removed from the global success of Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler is ever the quiet craftsman, sculpting one modest gem after another beyond the spotlight (at least in the United States). It's a shame that his solo music is largely ignored outside the States, because his albums are cohesive and complete in concept and they boast an aural bonanza of sound. "Get Lucky" is a tribute to the experiences and personalities of Knopfler's youth. The album takes sonic sojourns to the likes of Scotland ("Border River") and the Wild West ("Cleaning My Gun"), and the songs all seem to lock, with such prayer-like moments as the lovely "Remembrance Day." Listening to "Get Lucky" feels like a journey, where great care has been taken to ensure that you'll come back a little better.-Wes Orshoski