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Accelerate
R.E.M.
Purchase Online
Reviewed: 4/30/2008 by Ryan


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R.E.M.’s latest album “Accelerate” finally delivers the bands trademark sound… which they haven’t delivered since the late 80’s. “Accelerate” aggressively delivers Michael Stripe and co.’s independent sounding but mass appealing sound with a rock edge. The album doesn’t have a big production feel to it. It feels and sounds like anything R.E.M. did before the late 80’s. The pairing of Jackknife Lee & R.E.M. worked well on the album. The album features eleven tracks of some solid work from the band. “Man-Sized Wreath” is the best rock song that the band has released in over a decade. “Supernatural Superserious” is “Stand” with some added rockage. And the title-track “Accelerate” was aptly chosen to be the title track because it’s the epitome of a good R.E.M. song and what the new album is all about; a return to that sound. Not all of “Accelerate” is great. Songs like the Celtic-influenced “Until the Day is Done” have been done roughly 400 times in the past three years. The album clocks in at 35 minutes which feels incredibly thin for an R.E.M. album and is a little disappointing. And not once on this album does R.E.M. have a big instrumental session- which would have been awesome. A two minute guitar solo by Peter Buck would have made this album. Nonetheless, “Accelerate” is the best set for old fans of the band since 1985 and the best set for all fans of the band since 1994’s “Monster.”

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