Micheal Stipe: "The buzz words for Green were 'crunchy' and 'angular'; anything jangly or comfortable was out."
Music journalist: "A lot of people would say that you are mad"
Micheal Stipe: "A lot of people eat bacon and crisps for breakfast."
I never thought R.E.M was a great name for a band and when I was told R.E.M stood for "Rapid Eye Movement" (a physiological term for the stage of the sleep cycle at which dreaming begins) I liked it slightly less. I think the band have made more bad albums than good ones and I wasn't sad when they split up. And yet, credit where it's due... 30 years ago R.E.M (who were nearly called "Slut Bank") released a fucking fantastic record called "Green". I've been listening to "Green" a lot recently and I've decided it's the band at their absolute peak and I agree with both Kurt Cobain and The Times newspaper that "Green" is one of the best albums of all time.
Peter Buck: "R.E.M is part lies, part heart, part truth and part garbage".
"Pop Song 89" and "Stand" are Big, dumb pop songs. They're so dumb they're kind of smart.
Orange Crush is probably about the Agent Orange chemical warfare programme in Vietnam
41:01 (11 tracks) first release on a major, Singer Michael Stipe had reportedly told his bandmates to "not write any more R.E.M.-type songs". Larry Graham 5 star review in Q The Times included it in their list of 100 best albums of all time
“Run a carbon-black test on my jaw/ And you will find it’s all been said before” — “Hairshirt”
"World Leader Pretend" is one of the great R.E.M. songs.
“It was the first song I felt so confident about that we printed the lyric on the sleeve, allowing people to read it before they heard it,” Stipe tells me a few days later, in a London hotel. “I realised it was my take on Leonard Cohen. I was trying to be as smart as he was in his lyric writing.” The band had formed in 1980, “so you could say it was eight years in the making”, he adds.
Text by Denni Rusking 2018