24 years,13 studio albums and 45 million sold records makes R.E.M one of the most successful and influential bands of all time,since their drummer Bill Berry retired from the band in 97-Michael Stipe - Lead Singer/Peter Buck - Guitarist and Mike Mills - Bassist continued as a trio and will release their 14th album "Around the sun" on Oct.5. It?s been 3 years since their last album "Reveal" came out but last year their fans could enjoy the best of collection "In time" which chronicles some of the highlights of their 15 years on Warner Bros. Records. I must admit that I have never been such a big fan of this band although they have written some good stuff through the years,but when I heard the new single "Leaving New York"-I was taken by it?s emotional vibe and the beautiful vocal arrangement at the end of the song. So I didn?t think twice when myspace.com had the world premiere of streaming the whole album on the their site,"Around the sun" is a very laid back and soft album but that has also been R.E.M?s trademark on many of their albums. The new album isn?t as melancholic as "Automatic for the people" (92),it doesn?t contain the sweet pop stuff that "Out of time" (91) included,it certainly ain?t the rock album "Monster" (94) was but it?s more like a combination between the latest two efforts "Up" (98) and "Reveal" (2001). The music is acoustic based and composed mainly on the piano and the acoustic guitar with the exception of the synth oriented 80?s smelling "Electron blue" which is one of the best songs on the new album. The calm "Make it all okay" sounds like a future smash hit and the wonderful "I wanted to be wrong" is the perfect lullaby that can make any child or grown up to fall asleep.
This could be my introduction to the world of R.E.M,one thing for sure-"Around the sun" sounds like a platinum album already!