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Old 06-07-2005, 07:06 PM   #21
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Don't have all the albums, my favourite of the 5 or 6 that I have is definitely Automatic for the People.
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Old 06-07-2005, 07:11 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
I only have their Greatest Hits, but I really like it and would like to buy/burn more of their albums. So I will be using this thread for suggestions as far as what I should buy

My favorite song is E-Bow the Letter, also love Nightswimming obviously.
Same, that is what i'm using it for

I like, Losing my Religion and E-Bow aswell.. Man on the Moon aswell, the story behind their songs are great.
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Old 06-07-2005, 07:15 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by Cooper2000


Same, that is what i'm using it for


i thought it was a bit suspicious you didn't give your own opinions on the matter

btw- i may only have the greatest hits, but i am still sort of a hardcore fan in that i know all the words to E-bow the Letter...
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Old 06-07-2005, 07:20 PM   #24
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Basing my opinion only on the albums that I own, I would say Automatic FTP, New Adventures, and Murmur are my favourites. Each of those three is brilliant.

My favourite song is probably Losing my Religion, fave video probably Man on the Moon. E-bow the letter is brilliant, as VertigoGal said.
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Old 06-07-2005, 07:22 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal




i thought it was a bit suspicious you didn't give your own opinions on the matter

btw- i may only have the greatest hits, but i am still sort of a hardcore fan in that i know all the words to E-bow the Letter...
Lol, you are definitly hardcore if you know the words

I just have the greatest hits, and automatic for the people.. I don't follow the band much, I just really like their music. I'm definitly not clueless tho, so don't wave that finger at me girl! Haha :P
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Old 06-07-2005, 07:29 PM   #26
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hmm

maybe you should check the band index at the top of this forum that the lovely miss bonochick worked so hard on compiling for b&c's thoughts on REM
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Old 06-08-2005, 02:42 AM   #27
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My REM favorites are definitely the older classic tunes...

The One I Love
Orange Crush
Everybody Hurts
Losing My Religion
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Old 06-08-2005, 07:55 AM   #28
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I like Up. There, I said it, and I'm not sorry.
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Old 06-08-2005, 08:48 AM   #29
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REM, Big

saw them a couple of years ago and they opened up w/ Finest Worksong. What a wierd but cool song to open with.

I am Superman
Nightswimming
All of Eponymous, Monster, Out of Time (yes, even Shiny Happy People), Automatic for the People

Special shout out to KRS 1: now our children grow up prisoners, all their life, radio listeners !!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 07-10-2005, 01:25 AM   #30
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Automatic for the People and Lifes Rich Pageant are their two best records. Automatic is the best ALBUM, clearly, one of the best of all time. But Pageant captures them at their peak of excitement and creativity. You just have to put up with a tiny bit of filler, but it's my personal favorite. Maybe even more relevant now than 1986.

Up and New Adventures are tied in second. They finally realized how to make a great flowing album with no filler in the '90s, even as they lost a bit of the old energy (sometimes). These two are polar opposites musically, but they are both great travel albums. Take Up on an airplane, and New Adventures driving.

Fables a very close third (well really, fifth, after all those ties). It's weird how I've said their three most underrated albums are their third, fourth and fifth best but it's perfectly true. Fables is a folk rock masterpiece. "Feeling Gravitys Pull" is still maybe their most creative song ever. All the songs kind of sound the same, but that's fine.

Then Reckoning. If you think of "college rock" and a bad image pops into your head (like Dave Matthews drooling over some girl's skirt), all you have to do is listen to this again. Each of the previous albums including it, is a total classic. That's 6 out of 13.

Monster and Out of Time are simply very good. They have their flaws-- very different ones on each. They are REM trying out different styles of music and doing damn well at it, but not quite convincing. Monster deserves credit for being possibly the most consistent REM album besides Automatic for the People, and having some great lyrics, and Out of Time is one of the greatest springtime albums. 7th and 8th best, but I still love them.

Murmur is my 9th favorite. overrated. I do like it, but I rarely listen to it. I would probably like it more if it weren't for the way, like Document (which is even a lot more overrated) people put it above all the other stuff they did on the IRS label. It's a very good debut, nothing to criticize, except that it was followed by three that were way better. Yes, it's more original than Reckoning, more original than any REM album probably, and it rocks harder than Fables. I just like those better. They have better songs. And the songs on the Chronic Town EP are also better than the average on Murmur. Not an album to scoff at, still. "West of the Fields" is my favorite of their album closers.

Document... 10th best. Not a bad record, but not particularly great. Massively overrated. The only song I still really love is "Heron House." Document's politics and loudness are stronger than its music or creativity-- the only songs as interesting as the last album was are the last few, and they are some of the few songs from any artist that could be fairly called "failed experiments" (I don't like ever using that term). "The One I Love" feels completely out of place. It gets on a good political roll with all good songs on side 1 and makes a comeback with "King of Birds," but it just doesn't add up to what the album title promises. They made their definitive political statement in 1986.

Green is 11th. I see both Document and Green (and even Out of Time, a bit) as transitional records. Green has several GREAT songs, culminating in the brilliant "Orange Crush," REM's best single ever. Document didn't really have any GREAT songs, just some good ones. But Green is even less consistent and more lacking in purpose than Document. It's just an album of songs, basically, and it's overproduced at times, like Document was-- Scott Litt hadn't really caught on yet. You get the feeling of a band that was getting bigger but didn't know quite where it was going yet. A few songs aside, if I had been a fan in the mid '80s I might have lost interest until Automatic for the People.

Reveal is 12th. I didn't like this much when it came out... or actually, I loved it on first listen but then got bored. And discovered all the good older REM albums I hadn't heard. In retrospect, it's hardly awful. It's very consistent. It IS a nice summer album. The problem with it sometimes seems like mediocre lyrics and tunes, but it's almost entirely production. I can almost imagine "Beat a Drum" on Automatic for the People. But even the best songs here are somehow not presented in the best possible way. Only "Imitation of Life" comes out perfect. There are some good lyrics here and there. It's still the same old REM, just watered down too much. But it's still the same REM, that's important. It's a very nice listen actually, and much more consistent than either Document or Green, just lacking the former's sense of purpose (even if it only lasts for one side) and the latter's truly great songs. Reveal would have been a nice final album because it's just good enough, but not good enough to convince you they had much more to say.

13th best. Around the Sun. Is no longer the same REM, to me. Losing Bill Berry finally takes its toll as they make the entirely directionless, pandering, boring, unmelodic, trite, anticlimactic record that idiots said Up was. The best thing about Reveal was the way it returned to the sunny pastoral feeling of the earliest REM albums (and Automatic for the People/Out of Time). That's why I can forgive its many flaws. Around the Sun amplifies all those flaws, and scraps the classic REM pastoral thing. The best song "The Outsiders," could have been good with a less anonymous Dido-ish production job, but Pat McCarthy just seems to love those-- I don't get it, since he did a masterful job with Up and the Waterboys album I have.

Even on "The Outsiders" you've got a major problem when Q-tip rather than Michael Stipe supplies the most moving lyrics and vocals on an REM album. Stipe sounds tired. The band sounds like session musicians. It's just terrible. Even worse than How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, though I guess morally superior since it only sounds like it's trying to sell a lot, but thankfully didn't end up doing it. U2 has been quite a horrible influence on REM this decade, I have to say. They seem to think they can replicate U2's commercial success if only they write equally overproduced, pandering songs, but REM sucks at writing that kind of song, and U2 is quite brilliant at it. I have to give them credit. At least HTDAAB does rock at times, in its dinosaurish way. I can turn off my mind and enjoy bits of it. I'd have to turn off my ears to enjoy Around the Sun, which manages to be anonymously slick and unprofessional at the same time. It's hard to imagine any route out of mediocrity for REM now.
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Old 07-10-2005, 01:44 AM   #31
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I like Up. There, I said it, and I'm not sorry.
Me too
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Old 07-10-2005, 02:46 AM   #32
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Favourites for me are:

Out of Time - the best!

Murmur
New Adventures in HiFi

I also feel Around the Sun features some extremely strong tracks, particularly towards the end of the album. High Speed Train is amazingly beautiful in a lethargic way.

However, Final Straw is a horrible horrible song!


E-Bow the Letter
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Old 07-10-2005, 04:47 AM   #33
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Never been mad for REM, but a good band they certainly are.

Went to see them live not long ago with my dad (fathers day present), first live concert Ive ever been to, I enjoyed it.

Man on the moon is a song Ive loved ever since I was a kid, and Automatic for the people is a fantastic album, IMO.

I brought their "best of" album for under £5 the other day (absolute bargain) and enjoy that too.

I'll have to take a further look into their music...
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Old 07-10-2005, 07:36 AM   #34
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I'm a fan of R.E.M.'s early work, when they were an indie band. They had a sound(especially on the first album, Murmur) which was never repeated by the band or any other group. Life's Rich Pageant is my favorite album.
Of the newer records, New Adventures in Hi-Fi is excellent.
Not a very big fan of the other records(that includes Automatic For the People).

My favorite track are the live versions of Country Feedback.
Truly a fantastic song.
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Old 07-10-2005, 09:35 AM   #35
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everybody hurts one of the few " great songs" that are availible...
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Old 07-10-2005, 09:38 AM   #36
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I'm a big fan of every album. (Alright, so I don't listen to New Adventures very much.) But I do like Up. Have any of you read It Crawled From the South: An R.E.M. Companion? It's a fantastic book; very detailed and informative. It's slightly out-of-date though...I think the last edition was published in 1995. Even so, I highly recommend it.
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Old 07-10-2005, 12:26 PM   #37
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REM was one of my favorites back around 1991, up there with U2. I absolutely love their early to mid-80's stuff, but I haven't heard anything they've put out since New Adventures, except the singles.

I can appreciate Automatic, and it has beautiful stuff, but I prefer the cryptic, bouncy material like Wolves, Lower; Catapult; Hyena; Live and how to live it; and Pretty Persuasion. I don't have a clue what any of those songs are about, but there's something to be said for music that can move me emotionally without a real lyrical catalyst... Just the drive of the music and the urgency in the vocal delivery, which is more like another musical instrument than "lyrics."

I guess fans of Sigur Ros can relate. And really, U2 fans as well. I mean, really, what is it about "I'm wide awake, I'm not sleeping" in Bad that moves people to tears? Bono could be singing "The tire tool is in the trunk" at that key, and I would think, "man, that guy is dealing with some powerful stuff."

The REM albums that have not lost their grip on me are Murmur and Life's Rich Pageant. Other songs that I love: Crazy; Orange Crush; You are the Everything; Sweetness Follows; Camera; King of Birds; Driver 8; Gardening at Night... I could go on a long time.
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Old 07-10-2005, 01:16 PM   #38
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Wolves Lower is one of their greatest songs. Hands up people who have actually heard it and call themselves REM fans.

Not too many, unfortunately.
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Old 07-10-2005, 06:44 PM   #39
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Love every REM album? Sure do.

Especially UP....
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Old 07-10-2005, 07:31 PM   #40
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Wolves, Lower? Great song. I'm not a big fan of the other Chronic Town songs, but that one is awesome.

I really like Up, and never understood why it was so maligned. The last two have had a few bright spots, but as a whole, aren't that great for me. Saw them last fall, however, and they were still great.

I think my favorite albums are Automatic For the People, New Adventures in Hi-Fi, and Life's Rich Pageant.

Least favorite REM song is Everybody Hurts, which just puts me to sleep and makes me roll my eyes. Gorgeous video, though.

My only REM-encounter was at the second U2 show in Seattle this spring, when I looked down into the VIP area, pointed and shouted to my friend, "OH MY GOD, IT'S PETER BUCK!"

And my user name is from Find the River, one of the loveliest songs ever.
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