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Band: R.E.M.

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R.E.M.?

Crap
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Not Crap
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Total votes : 224

Band: R.E.M.

Postby cal on Mon Nov 17, 2003 11:29 pm

R.E.M.
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Postby Dylan on Tue Nov 18, 2003 9:25 am

Sorry - I don't think they're that great.
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Postby Bradley R. Weissenberger on Tue Nov 18, 2003 10:44 am

R.E.M. is a special and important part of my life, and I cannot imagine a world without their records. I can think of few bands who have sustained a level of excellence, innovation and integrity that matches R.E.M., and they continue to release fantastic records that delight and surprise me.

Here are my favorite R.E.M. records (excluding compilations) in descending order, as well as my favorite song from each record:

Document ("Disturbance At The Heron House")
Reckoning ("Little America")
Automatic For The People ("Find The River")
Murmur ("Pilgrimage")
Reveal ("Beat A Drum")
Lifes Rich Pageant ("Fall On Me")
Chronic Town ("Wolves, Lower")
Out Of Time ("Country Feedback")
Up ("Parakeet")
New Adventures In Hi-Fi ("Electrolite")
Fables Of The Reconstruction ("Kahoutek")
Green ("You Are The Everything")
Monster ("You" or "Tongue")
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Postby tmidgett on Tue Nov 18, 2003 10:59 am

brad, i think r.e.m. is crap on the whole, but your sustained devotion to them is inspiring

i am not being sarcastic

i can't think of a single band
who was making music while i was in high school
who is still making music
about whom i was truly crazy
about whom i am still truly crazy as a whole

i still appreciate and sometimes still love large swatches of the oeuvres of these groups, but none of these bands or my feelings about them cohered completely over time

the contemporary part is important--i've always loved the velvets and the stones for example. the stones don't really count as i was listening to old records.

wait...neil young. neil young makes it. but that seems different somehow.
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Postby Bradley R. Weissenberger on Tue Nov 18, 2003 12:16 pm

tmidgett wrote:i can't think of a single band
who was making music while i was in high school
who is still making music
about whom i was truly crazy
about whom i am still truly crazy as a whole

What about Silkworm (counting in Ein Heit)?
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Postby tmidgett on Tue Nov 18, 2003 12:19 pm

that doesn't count
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not crap

Postby mattw on Tue Nov 18, 2003 12:55 pm

...
Last edited by mattw on Wed Jul 19, 2006 2:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: not crap

Postby alex on Tue Nov 18, 2003 2:11 pm

Something really scary and universe – overturning happened to me regarding REM recently. I’ve never aired this publicly before.

In the Spring of 1989 I could listen to only one record. White Light White Heat. There has been only one other album in my life whose excellence garnered that treatment and I’m sure we all know what that is.

My friends, on the other hand, counted White Light White Heat as the lowpoint of the Velvet Underground’s output. The band they rated most highly was REM. I spent many, many nights in a room suffering through that band trying to figure out how people could be made so differently.

A few months ago I found an old cassette of Murmur and played it. It was really good. The highpoint was 9 – 9, which possessed a fast and loose, downright flailing guitar style that I had never associated with Peter Buck. The world shattering quandary raised by this re-appraisal is whether I have become old and a hopeless relativist in my tastes or the more troubling alternative—did my friends’ tastes back then possess a refinement I hadn’t detected? Or can an affinity for certain music arise simply from repeated exposure? All of these scenarios suck.

Nevertheless I’ve heard more recent REM songs since then and they remain unmitigated dreck. And Michael Stipe just might be the single most mannered, annoying person I’ve ever witnessed.
Last edited by alex on Tue Nov 18, 2003 6:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby steve on Tue Nov 18, 2003 2:51 pm

I too admire Brad for waving the REM flag. He has found something he truly loves, and it hasn't let him down. That's really cool.

Unfortunately, the thing itself, REM, is one of many manifestations of The Enemy.

Wait. First, let me list the things I like about REM:

Michael Stipe is an intelligent, entertaining person in conversation and attitude. I think he is okay.

They liked Andy Kaufman.

REM has been very supportive of Athens, Georgia, it's arts community and its music scene. They are true fans and genuine guys. I respect them.

The music, unfortunately is crap. Has always been crap. Dinky-dinky college pop (with a few trappings of "eclecticism" as dictated by the times) with some mumbling. It's not for me. REM represent a conformist, non-confrontational, self-absorbed streak in the music scene that I find unappealing. There isn't anything about their music that might stimulate thought. Wait... I thought of something:

REM is crap.
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Two still doing it..

Postby Mayfair on Tue Nov 18, 2003 3:04 pm

Tim....Neil Young and AC/DC. I can not think of any others....
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Re: Two still doing it..

Postby alex on Tue Nov 18, 2003 3:43 pm

Mayfair wrote:Tim....Neil Young and AC/DC. I can not think of any others....


The Fall?
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Postby tmidgett on Tue Nov 18, 2003 4:14 pm

allow to explain briefly what i meant

i liked the fall as a teenager

i liked ac/dc as a teenager

but i wasn't CRAZY about them. i like them both more now than i did then.

brad is CRAZY about r.e.m. and has been for some time

here are the artists/bands i was truly crazy about at various pts in my adolescent youth (high school), who were also active during that time:

rolling stones
neil young
psychedelic furs
english beat
husker du
replacements
r.e.m.
sonic youth
new order

i was crazy about them like i bought all their records, listened to their records an undue number of times, went to some length to see them play or wished i could see them play, etc.

of these bands, only the stones, neil, r.e.m., sonic youth, and (sort of) new order are still active. of these, only neil's current music still truly interests me, and he's scattershot at best.

this is why i am sorta jealous of brad's abiding affection for and connection to his favorite band
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Postby Bradley R. Weissenberger on Tue Nov 18, 2003 5:39 pm

One of my abiding R.E.M. memories relates to a recent conversation that I had with a friend of mine.

During our conversation, my friend, an inveterate R.E.M. hater, once again detailed for me his distaste for R.E.M. As he well knows, I am wholly unconcerned as to whether he or anyone else gives a damn about that band (or any other band that I respect, for that matter).

What I found totally compelling about the conversation was the analogy that he drew between himself (i.e., a person almost totally informed by the ideals and aesthetic of punk rock) and fans of 1950s "hard rock" (e.g., Duane Eddy, Link Wray). He recognized that fans of Duane Eddy or Link Wray in those days might have later sneered at, say, Buddy Holly for allegedly appropriating and watering down their sacred sound (despite the fact that Buddy Holly is actually great and has little to do with either Duane Eddy or Link Wray).

My R.E.M. hating friend then acknowledged that he might be hopelessly predisposed to hate R.E.M. simply because of a temporal accident. That is, R.E.M. arrived on the tail end of punk's cultural ascendence and possessed, at least superficially -- and to the chagrin of entrenched punks -- some of the same elements that a casual observer might perceive as "punk" (despite the fact that they have little to do with punk). Simply put, my friend felt that he might have had no choice but to hate R.E.M. simply because of when both he and they arrived, just as Duane Eddy and Link Wray fans might have disliked Buddy Holly.

In any event, I thought that this observation was one of the most fair and insightful self-critiques that I had ever heard. I think that the willingness and ability to revisit an opinion on a band that one detests and draw this type of opinion is pretty goddamned inspiring.

So with this attitude in mind, I'm going to go listen to some records by Weezer. Who knows? There might be a good reason, albeit latent, as to why I hate Weezer that has nothing to do with their music and everything to do with fool me.
Last edited by Bradley R. Weissenberger on Tue Nov 18, 2003 7:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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2 cent

Postby O H Lee on Thu Nov 20, 2003 3:43 pm

early R.E.M. still has that murky feel that all the imitators in & out of the South never achieved. They had the misfortune to start out at a very polarizing time when the fact that they weren't HARD AND LOUD was held against them. Their direction definitely changed when they signed to Warners and became a pop band.

Living in Georgia, I have heard funny(but not scandalous stories about them)

I knew this old punk rock guy here in Atlanta, Spider, who saw them in their first year of existence. He said they played mostly covers, but you didn't really hear too many bands in Georgia play "Roadrunner", "There She Goes Again" or Fabulous Poodles covers. Spider also said that Stipe came up to him eagerly asking him if he liked his band.

In fact, their covers gained them instant popularity in Athens. They brought people to the 40 Watt that groups like the Method Actors would never bring. One old time Athens person remembers as just a party band and was amazed and how unique their records and later stage shows were.
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Postby capnreverb on Tue Mar 23, 2004 5:58 pm

Not crap when you had no idea what Stipe was singing.
Mega crap when he started to sing in a way you could.
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Postby Angus Jung on Wed Mar 24, 2004 2:45 pm

The early R.E.M. records were directly responsible for putting me on the musical path I guess I'm still on today. I loved them to death. Stipe's mysterious melancholy and self-absorption, which went really well with the overall feel of the music, was delicious candy to me and many other kooky adolescents.

Much as I think of J.D. Salinger as a great writer of young adult fiction, I think of R.E.M. up to I'd say "Document" as a great band for young adults. Once you hit your 16th birthday or so, you should put them down.

Looking back on it now...they were just ridiculously influential to so many bands who were a part of the first really big wave of indie labels in the late 80's. Band after band after band slavishly and poorly imitated them. I'm so glad it isn't that way anymore.

Their drummer wasn't too hot. Peter Buck was born without the 'rock' chromosome. Audible vocals ruined whatever juice Stipe had. I never think about them or their music. What exactly is their legacy?

CRAP.
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Postby same on Fri Mar 26, 2004 5:54 pm

overall, crap. i'd hit up reckoning for a song during one of those summer daytime college radio sets. sandiwched right inbetween some minutemen and some mission of burma maybe.
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meh

Postby Redline on Fri Mar 26, 2004 6:15 pm

I bought the first lp because I thought it sounded psychedelic in a way. I saw them play that year and some of my friends went nuts. I couldn't figure out why some people were so over the top and devoted to them, they weren't that good.
Much time was saved later when someone would recommend a band/record to me by saying "They're kind of like REM". I knew to steer clear instantly.


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Postby Angry_Dragon on Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:05 pm

NOT CRAP if they would've stopped in 89.
They sound like Nirvana without a distortion pedal.
Better yet, eat the placenta!!!
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Postby Bradley R. Weissenberger on Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:07 pm

In case anyone cares, R.E.M.'s new record "Around The Sun" is available for preview at http://www.myspace.com/rem/.

I imagine that most of you do not care.

Oh well.
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