Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Early R.E.M. Collected

The R.E.M. nerd in me feels obligated to point out that the band is releasing a two-disc anthology of its years on the IRS label in September, including rarities, demos, etc. Those little more than five years at IRS (1982-1987) saw the release of the e.p. Chronic Town and then five great full-lengths -- Murmur, Reckoning, Fables of the Reconstruction, Life's Rich Pageant, and Document. That's quite an impressive stretch, and the albums were consistent enough (and devoid enough of huge hits, at least until Document) that choosing songs from them seems ridiculous, but the only ones I would have found a place for that aren't anywhere on the collection are "Carnival of Sorts (Box Cars)," "Laughing," "Good Advices," and "Wendell Gee."

The sad thing is that it's about 25 years since the band formed, and exercises like this only hammer home the likelihood that, with the release of three consecutive mostly forgettable records and a couple of other greatest-hits projects, they're done making great music.

(Via Pop Candy)

4 Comments:

Blogger MAW said...

After listening to their last two albums, I fear that last statement might be right.

1:49 PM  
Blogger Dezmond said...

The only thing I might quibble with is the point where they stopped making great music. 20, 30 years ago? When was their debut?

8:54 PM  
Blogger JMW said...

That's cold, Dezmond. Ice cold. Especially coming from someone who owns, or at least used to own, what, 80 percent of their catalog? Come clean, my friend. I can admit to liking the Boss. Why can't you cop to your love for the boys from Athens?

3:52 AM  
Blogger Dezmond said...

I kid, I kid. I like them alright. I've got ten of their releases. But I also own some Fixx and Flock of Seagulls.

11:51 PM  

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