This is the newest album R.E.M. have to offer, and let me tell you, it's brilliant. There's something so warm and touching about this album, something most of their previous albums failed to reach. And while it's no Automatic, it should be considered a classic.
With the departure of Bill Berry, the bands drummer, fans of the old days believed that R.E.M. would never be the same again... how true. This is R.E.M. like you've never heard them before, happy and upbeat. The polar opposite to Automatic, actually.
You've probably heard the albums two main singles, Imitation Of Life and All The Way To Reno (You're Gonna Be A Star), which are both fantastic songs, and show that, even after a period of about 20 years, the band still know how to keep the auidence satisfied.
The opening, titled The Lifting, is a great way to start the album, and gives you a taste of what's to come. It makes me feel lightheaded! Couple this with beautiful tracks like I've Been High, She Just Wants To Be, and Beat A Drum, and you have a winner on your hands. Even the experimental The Chorus And The Ring proves to be a success!
The highlight of the album, however, is the exquisite I'll Take The Rain, perhaps the bands most beautiful and underrated song (though it did get an interesting music video!) This, in my eyes, makes the album worthy of purchase alone... it's just so sweet.
In case you haven't it out yet, this album is good. Very good. The fans obsessed with the IRS days poo-poo this album, but there's nothing wrong with showing your lighter side.
I recommend this album to everyone, whether you are a fan of the band, or not. It will touch you like it touched me.