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REM - Around The Sun

  by Anthony Strutt

published: 16 / 9 / 2004

REM - Around The Sun
Label: Wea
Format: CD


Strong latest album from REM, their third as a three piece since the departure of original drummer Bill Berry

'Around the Sun" is Michael Stipe, Mike Mills and Peter Buck's third album as a three piece since the departure of original drummer Bill Berry. The album opens up with the new single, 'Leaving New York'. And if you like that track, then you will probably love the rest of this album. 'New York' is a song about a love affair with a city and after 9/11carries particularly poignant meaning. 'Electron Blue' follows and has a dancey drum machine moog feel to it. 'The Outsiders' features Q Tip rapping on the end of it, but this doesn't muck the song up at all. In actual fact, it fits on well and helps tobring the song to an affirmative close. As on all the album, Michael Stipe's vocals are crystal clear and lovely. 'Make It All Okay' sees the band in reflective mood. 'Final Straw' is reminiscent of the Cars' 'Drive' and is perky and features some strong guitar guitar playing. 'I Wanted to Be Wrong' is perhaps my favourite track on the album. Acoustic based, it is as powerful as 'Everybody Hurts' and well sung and played. "Wanderlust' is a sing-a-long number, while 'Boy in the Well' is very moody .'Aftermath' is strummed, and easy to hum along too. 'High Speed Train' features some very odd instrumentation at its start and some fantastic Spanish acoustic guitar. 'The Worse Joke Ever' is anthem like and heartwarming. while 'The Ascent of Man', which again is well played, features a pleasant organ break from Posies frontman Ken Stringfellow. It ends with the title track which has something of a Beach Boys vibe, and that ends the album. A great record. There will be few better records by the year's end.

Track Listing:-
1 Leaving New York
2 Electron Blue
3 The Outsiders [feat. Q-Tip]
4 Make It All Okay
5 Final Straw
6 I Wanted To Be Wrong
7 Wanderlust
8 Boy In The Well
9 Aftermath
10 High Speed Train
11 The Worst Joke Ever
12 The Ascent Of Man
13 Around The Sun

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