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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Initial Thoughts Album Review # 2 - R.E.M. Accelerate

Initial Thoughts Album Review # 2
Unpretentious album reviews that forgo the big words, analogies and obscure music-references to simply voice some initial thoughts and gut reactions.

There has been quite a bit of hype out this album, and I'll be the first to admit that it has gotten my hopes VERY high. I lived off R.E.M. back in middle and high school and I even liked their controversial Monster and New Adventures in Hi-Fi releases (I say "controversial" because some fans despise those releases . . . I liked them). But, since this it has really been disappointing. Up and a good song or, but Reveal and Around the Sun were tragedies. As I sit and listen to Accelerate, however, I find myself transported back to their golden era . . . almost. It is an interesting mix: On certain tracks I find myself feeling like I'm listening to some unreleased song from the Life's Rich Pageant sessions, but at the same time I hear elements in Michael Stipe's voice that are distinctly post-Automatic for the People. In other words, I'm excited. I think that Stipe and the boy have taken what they always did best and updated it to include some of the good new evolutions, jettisoning the bad habits of the last 8 years or so. Hooray! I'm so excited to be excited about R.E.M. again!

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