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R.E.M.
Accelerate
(Warner Bros.)

Who the hell saw THIS record coming? R.E.M. has their early grit and edgy, post-punk wits about them on their best record in years, Accelerate. Peter Buck’s guitar crunch on the opening, “Living Well is the Best Revenge” signals a call back to Green-era R.E.M. Meanwhile, Michael Stipe’s vocals are as fresh as ever, jerking me back to the early ‘90s. The bouncing pop of “Supernatural Superserious”, could easily find a home nestled in the track-listing of 1992’s Automatic for the People or 1991’s Out of Time. With a band as great as R.E.M. it’s impossible not to compare the current record with their previous, and illustrious, efforts. This is a great thing but also means there is no new ground to tread. “Until the Day is Done” offers the same, clever introspection as any of the superb ballads of yesteryears. It is just a shock when you expect one thing and get something that completely blows away your expectations. Accelerate does exactly that, and is a much-welcomed return to form for this Athens, GA trio.


-James


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Monday, July 28, 2014 All Contents Copyright © 2014 Stinkweeds Music