For beginners, one of the most important tasks is to get a sense for how a new language sounds. You can do this by immersion and osmosis -- living in a country, perhaps -- but it's hard and you'll usually just get exposed to the same set of words and phrases: numbers, directions and greetings.
Another great way of hearing a decent amount of sounds and suitable materials is to quickly run through an audio-only course designed for total beginners. If your language of choice exists in Michel Thomas and/or Pimsleur, you can do those. They're a great way to get your tongue around the language. But they can be pricey, which is why I wanted to mention another option: Language Transfer.
These are free courses in eight different languages which follow a similar model to Michel Thomas in that they are recordings of a small group class in that particular language. The courses differ in how far they take you, but generally speaking they offer an overview of the grammar and some useful phrases and vocabulary.
If you're looking for a cheap way to get a start in something like German or even Turkish or Swahili, check it out.