There's a splinter in your eye and it reads "REACT" (R.E.M. Appreciation Station)

#1

idk how i slept on this band for like what. 20 years??
I recently got dangerously immersed in their discography thanks to a podcast, and over the last couple months have gone from casually fond of their big singles to uhh, thinking of them as one of my favorite bands.

Someone on this board (Tlon i think? Wow what happened to that dude, are they still around??) once put in my head the idea of music that you were always a fan of, that was just there at a fixed point in your personal timeline waiting for you to catch up. Where you listen to them for the “first time” and feel like you’re gaslighting yourself – no way, i always loved these guys, what the fuck am i talking about? Thats kind of how going through these dudes’ albums has felt to me. Theres an alternate timeline out there where REM were my gateway band into alternative music instead of Talking Heads.

Anyways that’s enough wankery, talk about this good good band and/or post your favorites plz. or we can just talk about how adorable Mike Mills is.

i think my favorite is probably

but there’s also








actually everything on chronic town fucking rules, listen to all of it straightaway even if you’re "not a fan"

what hooked me into trying out their whole discog was listening to this EP and going “wtf, this is the same guys who did Man on the Moon”

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#2

On Chronictown they’re kind of like a weird Southern Smiths.

#3

Yeah, uh. R.E.M. was the first musical act I got into. I haven’t really listened to them in years, but I probably have the full lyrics to every song through New Adventures in Hi-Fi seared into my brain somewhere.

Reconstruction of the Fables, Chronic Town, and Monster are the stand-outs, I think. Not so thrilled with transitory period from IRS to WB.

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#4

I love Monster, and I was pretty sure that was a deeply uncool think to admit until Aderack did.

I also really like Up so maybe I’m just a weirdo.

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#5

i mostly couldnt stand monster except for “whats the frequency kenneth?” but i thought new adventures nailed what they were going for with monster (while doing its own thing at the same time)

my favorites are probably chronic town, murmur, fables and automatic for the people because i guess i like weird dark REM the best.
also really like reckoning, green, out of time, document which is a weird one with some really regrettable tracks (“the one i love” is so overrated and bad btw(“end of the world” is not, it’s still brilliant)) but also one of my absolute favorite of their songs:

#6

But man, Crush with Eyeliner. King of Comedy. This is some of their best stuff.

Tracks like this strike me as a much more natural through-line from Chronic Town than most of the Fall On Me stuff that comes between.

On the other hand, Strange Currencies is the exact same song as Everybody Hurts, and both are… not my thing.

Hi-Fi is a good album, poorly formatted. It needs to lose about four tracks and radically resequence the rest, else it loses all momentum 1/3 of the way through. It’s front-loaded with very long, ploddy pieces, most of them quite good but, you know, not in that order.

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#7

Here’s the only way I listen to New Adventures:

  1. How the West was Won and Where it Got Us
  2. Bittersweet Me
  3. Undertow
  4. E-Bow the Letter
  5. Leave
  6. Be Mine
  7. Binky the Doormat
  8. So Fast, So Numb
  9. Low Desert
  10. Electrolite

This makes it into a neat sort of hybrid of Monster and Automatic for the People. With Leave as the centerpiece, tying it all together.

Man, that’s probably their single best song, isn’t it.

The other songs are mostly good too; they just don’t work as part of the album. I’d put them on an EP or use them as B-sides.

Oh, speaking of B-sides, often R.E.M.'s are better than the average album track. They have so much stuff that never wound up on an album…

Weird thing about R.E.M. is that their default evocation is melancholy nostalgia. The weird part is that this hit me in such a pronounced way when I found them in high school. I was, like, fourteen, and crying about what had been lost forever.

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#8

Yeah, I think they work better now that I’m an old person with a crushed spirit.

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#9

REM is kind of incredible because they are one of those zeitgeisty, era-defining bands and yet no band on earth has ever sounded anything like them

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#10

Waiting for @Felix to chime in about Time After Time (Annelise)…

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#11

I can’t hear it’s the end of the world on the radio without turning it way up and singing along at top volume.

It’s me, I’m that guy.

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#12

i was waiting to see who would post “unseen power of the picket fence” and betting it would be felix.

but oh no, you said too much. You set it up.

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#13

i own every CD from Chronic Town -> Up incl. Dead Letter Office

one of the greatest american bands imo. like seriously top 10 greatest american band ever. maybe top 5

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#14
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#15

I went camping with my dad and sister a long time ago. I had a copy of Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town and I also got a UTI.

Neither of those are related to this story!

During that entire trip, I had the song “Losing My Religion” stuck in my head. Three endless days of this song, over and over and over and over. Since I didn’t have any lyrical music to listen to, there was nothing I could use to flush the song from my brain. I tried as hard as I could to come up with other songs but it just kept coming back to R.E.M. I couldn’t even sleep properly as this song tortured me.

I’ve never had something like that happen to me before or since. Any time that song pops into my head, I immediately stop myself and listen to another song just to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Anyway R.E.M. is pretty good but I can’t listen to any of their music for fear of being possessed again.

OHHHH LIFE

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#16
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#17

this was stuck in my head basically all today. it was indeed a bad day and i would prefer it if you did not take my picture

#18

i can kind of see it, but more importantly you gave me an excuse to post this

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#19

murmur is so close to a perfect album it’s absurd

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#20

Yeah it’s so goddamn good



love that album cover too

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