This place matters

This place matters

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Speaking of the devil, REM is breaking up. And I'm actually pretty broken up about it. I failed to mention last post that they're one of my favorite bands. Their work is real and raw and wholeheartedly original. They crackle.
I wish I had the words to describe what they are musically, but they won't come. I can only describe, then, what they are to me.
Back when I was in 7th grade, the local pop station, Power 108, started playing the same song over, and over, and over. For twenty four straight hours.

For what it's worth, I know every word of this song. Which is more than Michael Stipe can say... note the cheat sheet in this clip and the fact that he still gets some lyrics reversed.

And crap. I just wrote a really beautiful thing about Everybody Hurts and Blogspot ate it. Bad Blogspot. Bad.


Anonymous said...

I don't mean this in a "hater" kind of way, but REM was still together? I like their music, but I don't recall hearing anything from them in a while.

As far as "Everybody Hurts" goes, it's a pretty easy song to play on the guitar, too. I think it was one of the first songs I learned how to pick.

Brigid Daull Brockway said...

Actually, they've done a couple albums recently. 2008's Accelerate is actually my favorite album of theirs. It just crackles. To me, it seemed like it brought all of their potential to fruition. It was much more cohesive than any of their earlier work, much more consistent. It's one of those albums, like The Wild, the Innocent, and the E Street Shuffle that's best taken as a whole... which may be why more people weren't taken with it. Critics loved it though. I highly recommend it. Oddly, I don't remember hearing anything about it at all, didn't see any posters or hear them on the radio. Everything I got was word of mouth. Which is what everybody seems to be saying - either people love the album, or they have no idea it exists.
They put out Collapse into Now this year; it was also critically acclaimed and also a really good album.
I think the reason they kind of fell off the radar is that they kept making music their own way after the styles moved on. Not that they were stuck in the past; their work had matured and evolved quite a bit. It just didn't fit any trends, and I think they were fine with that.
That's probably a longer answer than you were expecting :)

Anonymous said...

Perhaps, but it illustrates very clearly why you like them, so it's all good.