R.E.M – Up (1998)

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GREAT SONGS :
Suspicion
Sad Professor
At My Most Beautiful

VERY GOOD SONGS :
Lotus
Walk Unafraid
Daysleeper
Diminished

GOOD SONGS :
Airportman
The Apologist
Why Not Smile
Parakeet

NOT MY THING :
Hope
You’re In The Air
Falls To Climb

TRASH :
None

THE CHEESE : The first R.E.M. album after Bill Berry left the band and it’s safe to safe his departure made it difficult for the band to actually rock – because their next three albums were all very quiet, small albums.  This is a good album though and has some of Michael Stipe’s best lyrics.  It runs too long and (like every album) should have been no more than 10-11 tracks.  But the album has some songs that I really love.

I bought this album when it came out in 1998 as a present for a girl I was trying to sleep with who was also a big fan of the band.  I also got her a box of Chinese Stress Balls.  Looking back, I probably should have bought her something more feminine.  Nothing says ‘I find you sexually attractive, I want to pleasure you and use your body for my own pleasure…if you’re down with it’ like a CD and a box of Chinese Stress Balls.  I never slept with her.

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R.E.M – Reveal (2001)

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GREAT SONGS :
The Lifting
Saturn Return
Chorus & The Ring

VERY GOOD SONGS :
I’ve Been High
All The Way To Reno
Beat A Drum
Imitation Of Life

GOOD SONGS :
She Just Wants To Be

NOT MY THING :
Disappear
Summer Turns To High

TRASH :
I’ll Take The Rain
Beachball

THE CHEESE : I read on a message board quite recently that this is the perfect summer album to listen to while sitting in the shade on a summer afternoon drinking a chardonnay.  If someone said that to me in person I would have to tell that person to calm the hell down, get a hold of yourself and recognise this is not the kind thought you express to other people.  With that said, it’s a pretty album.  It’s another post-Berry album that doesn’t get the respect it deserves.  It’s not great but it has a place.

R.E.M – Around The Sun (2004)

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GREAT SONGS :
Leaving New York
Final Straw

VERY GOOD SONGS :
Electron Blue
The Outsiders
The Ascent Of Man

GOOD SONGS :
Make It All Okay
I Wanted To Be Wrong
Aftermath

NOT MY THING :
The Boy In The Well
High Speed Train

TRASH :
Wanderlust
The Worst Joke Ever
Around The Sun

THE CHEESE :  Not nearly as bad as many R.E.M. fans would have you believe…but that doesn’t mean its good either.  Of all their albums, it has the highest quota of crap on it.  It’s probably their worst album.  But it’s not terrible, it’s just as a whole the album plods along without getting anywhere but there are enough individual tracks worth giving a try.

R.E.M – Accelerate (2008)

R.E.M._-_Accelerate

GREAT SONGS :
Living Well Is The Best Revenge
Man-Sized Wreath
Houston
Until The Day Is Done

VERY GOOD SONGS :
Supernatural Superserious
Hollowman
Mr. Richards
Sing For The Submarine

GOOD SONGS :
Accelerate
Horse To Water

NOT MY THING :
I’m Gonna DJ

TRASH :
None

THE CHEESE :  I love this album.  It had been 12 years since the band last released a true rock n roll album.  So this loud, brash album was a true treat at the time.  It’s short, snappy and never seems to get old.

R.E.M – Collapse Into Now (2011)

rem-collapse-into-now

GREAT SONGS :
Discoverer
All The Best
UBerlin
Oh My Heart

VERY GOOD SONGS :
Walk It Back
Alligator_Aviator_Autopoliot_Antimatter
Blue

GOOD SONGS :
It Happened Today
Every Day Is Yours To Win
Mine Smells Like Honey

NOT MY THING :
That Someone Is You
Me, Marlon Brando, Marlon Brando And I

TRASH :
None

THE CHEESE :  The band’s final album (as it turned out) and they finish on a pretty good note with one of my favourite post-Berry albums.  The opening four tracks are especially strong.  After that it gets a bit all-over-the-place.