Bruce Springsteen's Nebraska is a bleak endeavor, and even though I love the album very much, about two entire listens is as much as I can take in a day. Songs that begin with “Seen a man standin' over a dead dog by the highway in a ditch” (the biting Reason to Believe which has been covered well by Aimee Mann) and end with line “Let 'em shave off my hair and put me on that execution line” (the murder ballad Johnny 99) can put a damper on one's mood, a fact that unfortunately contributed to the album's lack of commercial success.
Even the way Nebraska was recorded sounds desolate and lonely. It was recorded, initially as a rough draft for the band and he to work from, on a four track with just Bruce, his guitars, and a harmonica. Attempts were made to record it with Clarence, Little Steven and Co., but it didn't fly, and producers went back to the haunting original recordings for release.
The entire album is great, Highway Patrolman is my personal vote for the finest of the bunch, you can listen to it if you click on the 'hear' button at the top of the page.