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REM split up


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R.E.M. announce they are splitting up

 

The group of childhood friends once hailed for taking indie music into the mainstream are to split after three decades

 

 

reddit this

 

 

Tim Jonze

guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 21 September 2011 20.23 BST

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R.E.M. have announced they are to split after three decades. Photograph: AP

 

 

For three decades, R.E.M. were considered one of the world's most significant rock bands but in an unexpected statement on their website, the group of childhood friends once hailed for taking indie music into the mainstream announced they were splitting up.

 

The end came with a message on their official website. It read: "To our Fans and Friends: As R.E.M., and as lifelong friends and co-conspirators, we have decided to call it a day as a band."

 

"We walk away with a great sense of gratitude, of finality, and of astonishment at all we have accomplished," the statement continued. "To anyone who ever felt touched by our music, our deepest thanks for listening."

 

The band, who formed in Athens, Georgia in 1980, originally consisted of singer Michael Stipe, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills and drummer Bill Berry, although Berry quit in 1997 after suffering a brain aneurysm two years earlier. The group released a series of records and were cult heroes on the US college rock circuit before finding worldwide fame throughout the 90s with the multi-platinum selling albums Out Of Time, Automatic For The People and Monster. Their hit Everybody Hurts

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I only found out about ten minutes ago, but I've already seen enough "end of the world as we know it..but I feel fine" jokes on Twitter to kill a puppy!

 

I'm a fan. But apart from the first single I didnt even bother with their latest album (being a twat, I'll download it now) and they havnt performed live for a few years either. Maybe its for the best.

 

They have an awesome back catalogue though. It'll be a shame if they're finished, but I cant take any retirements or break-ups seriously these days. They had a great run and good luck on their solo work (which hopefully goes tits up and they do a reunion tour in few years.)

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REM are one of those bands ive stupidly overlooked over the years, i own Automatic For The People and the latest Best of. and i love them both but they are a band that ive never really felt the need to delve into their vast back catalogue.

 

Back when i was first becoming a music fan, it was when i was playing under 14's football and the boy who always took me to games, training etc. always had a few bands playing in the car, it was either Pantera, The Smashing Pumpkins, Rush or REM. Weird mix, but listening to REM always takes me back to those days.

 

I think it's time to get into that back catalogue....

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Grew up on REM and Automatic For The People remains possibly my favourite album ever, so obviously I'm not thrilled about the news.

 

Around The Sun and Accellerate were alright but nothing special, a few stand-out tracks though. Collapse Into Now is a fantastic album, and first CD I've bought for about 5 years. I'm glad they at least went out on a high and not something utterly shit.

 

I don't feel that sad about the news though, because they've been going for a long long time and it was going to happen sooner rather than later.

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Around The Sun and Accelerate were alright but nothing special, a few stand-out tracks though. Collapse Into Now is a fantastic album, and first CD I've bought for about 5 years. I'm glad they at least went out on a high and not something utterly shit.

 

See, I loved Accelerate, I'm Gonna DJ aside. Sing For The Submarine is REM doing Glass Onion, with the piles of callbacks to previous songs on previous albums, and is great. ATS can fuck off and die though.

 

Completely agreed on Collapse Into Now. I am entirely happy with Blue being the final track on the final album. They harnessed the feel of a live version of Country Feedback and fused it with e-Bow the Letter, and wrapped it round to Discoverer in a quite frankly amazing fashion. It's a fantastic goodbye, in hindsight.

 

Also, Nightswimming is the most overrated song in the entire world. Perfect Circle is the same kind of song done ten times better. Man, fuck Nightswimming.

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Around The Sun and Accelerate were alright but nothing special, a few stand-out tracks though. Collapse Into Now is a fantastic album, and first CD I've bought for about 5 years. I'm glad they at least went out on a high and not something utterly shit.

 

See, I loved Accelerate, I'm Gonna DJ aside. Sing For The Submarine is REM doing Glass Onion, with the piles of callbacks to previous songs on previous albums, and is great. ATS can fuck off and die though.

 

Completely agreed on Collapse Into Now. I am entirely happy with Blue being the final track on the final album. They harnessed the feel of a live version of Country Feedback and fused it with e-Bow the Letter, and wrapped it round to Discoverer in a quite frankly amazing fashion. It's a fantastic goodbye, in hindsight.

 

Also, Nightswimming is the most overrated song in the entire world. Perfect Circle is the same kind of song done ten times better. Man, fuck Nightswimming.

 

I was listening to Blue on the bus today, oddly enough. To be fair though, I generally listen to some REM most days. Agreed that it's a fitting end to not only the album, but a career.

Nightswimming is a great song, but it's not even in my top 5 off Automatic for the People. I do love it though.

Hairshirt is another great example of a Nightswimming-esque song done better.

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Last few albums have been dreck. 'Supernatural Superserious' was the final nail in the coffin for a band that clearly don't care anymore. Amazing in their day, great live and have some truly wonderful songs, but yeah, it's time.

About sums it up really. They've been a really average (at best) for 15 years now, they really should have called it a day when Bill Berry decided to 'retire'. So really this is long overdue, from a creative/music stand point.

 

They are still an amazing live band and the only shock about this is, I thought they'd turn into the Rolling Stones and just tour and continue to release the occassional so so (at best) album, kind of like they were doing.

 

Murmur is a magical debut and they have released some excellent songs/albums after that. It's just a shame a generation knows them as 'Dad rock' rather than the vital band they were.

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I was listening to Blue on the bus today, oddly enough. To be fair though, I generally listen to some REM most days. Agreed that it's a fitting end to not only the album, but a career.

Nightswimming is a great song, but it's not even in my top 5 off Automatic for the People. I do love it though.

Hairshirt is another great example of a Nightswimming-esque song done better.

 

I disagree, I just find Nightswimming terrible. Worst song on AFTP by a mile, for me.

 

Flicking through my iPhone - I have six live versions of Country Feedback on here, including one with Neil Young. Man.

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About sums it up really. They've been a really average (at best) for 15 years now, they really should have called it a day when Bill Berry decided to 'retire'. So really this is long overdue, from a creative/music stand point.

 

If you'd said that in 2004, sure, absolutely. Up, Reveal and Around the Sun were the three albums after Berry left, and none of them rise above mediocre. AtS is actively terrible. But Accelerate and Collapse into Now are very good albums, and turn their career graph into one with a dip rather than a decline. YMMV of course, but a lot of people gave up after Up, and I'm willing to bet that a lot of people assume that that style of music was what they were producing up til today, rather than music that, in all honesty, compares better to Document and New Adventures in Hi Fi than Up and Monster.

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