Tuesday, March 15, 2011

See ya, R.E.M. - Out of Time

Expired March 12, 2011
I've been looking forward to this one for a couple weeks now.  Not because I don't like this album, I do, but because of the obvious jokes I can make (but won't) about the record's title.  R.E.M.'s "Out of Time" officially expired this past weekend.

Probably my favorite R.E.M. record*, OOT is known for featuring "non-traditional rock instruments" (mandolin, organ, congas, etc.)  It also spawned one of the most iconic music videos of all time, Losing My Religion's vid directed by Tarsem Singh.

I remember buying this cd at our local video/music store, Alfalfa Video.  (Alfalfa Video apparently still exists.  There's one left and it's in Bossier City, LA.)  It's weird.  At one time I owned or had access to every R.E.M. release up to and including "Monster."  Today, the only R.E.M. record I own is "Murmur" (Exp. April '03) on vinyl.  I don't know what my problem is with hard copies of music, but I must lose five to six cd's a year.   I suppose it makes this experiment a little easier.

Because it's been so long since I've listened to this cd, I familiarized myself with its track listing and saw three or four titles that I had no recollection of.  I imagine if I heard them again (which I won't) it'd all come back to me.

A somewhat-funny anecdote re: the opening track "radio song": when I was in college I was at a bar with some friends and there was a dude playing acoustic guitar and taking requests.  He passed around a sheet with all the songs he could play and on it was "radio song."  Knowing it featured a rap portion (originally performed by KRS-One**), I thought it would be funny to request it.  When I did, the guy was like "...really?  fine..."  And I'm thinking... "you made the list, dude."  So he starts to play and I'm digging it.  Eventually, he comes to the rap portion which I assume he WON'T do, so I start clapping.  He looks at me and says "You obviously don't know this song very well" and then busts into the rap.  I got served by some white dude with an acoustic guitar.  And I didn't even see it coming.

Anyway, to recap: 7 of R.E.M.'s 14 studio releases have expired.  That means, no more "Staaaand in the place where you are...", no more "I am... I am!  I am Superman...", no more "It's theeee end of the world as we know it..."   And you know what?  I feel fine.

*Even though, in public I tell people Murmur is my favorite.  I do this to look cool.

**This was my introduction to KRS-One.  He's also the reason I call my wife Krs10.  (she's ten times better)


  1. This one hits home, not because I'm a big REM fan, but because I remember so clearly this era in music. I remember the "Losing My Religion" video winning like 37 Video Music Awards and Michael Stipe (Still "straight" at this point) wearing a different t-shirt to the podium each time.

    Mostly you just made me feel old again.


  2. Not a big REM fan? Come on honey, you like REM! The second CD (ugh, we've been dating forever...you used to buy me CD's!) you ever bought me was the REM double CD Best of Album. PLUS Nightswimming was playing in your apartment in the background the night we first said that we loved each other.

    So take it back. You love REM.....right?