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Old 09-24-2014, 12:08 PM   #251 (permalink)
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Title: Automatic for the people
Artiste: REM
Year: 1992
Chronological position: Eighth album
Previous experience of this artiste?: Nothing bar the few singles, most of which are from this album!
Why is this considered a classic? It seems to hold a place as one of the best albums of the 1990s, plus there were six singles from it, four of which were big hits and it sold over 18 million copies. Probably opened up REM to new fans too who may not have heard their previous work.
My thoughts
One minute (or thereabouts in) ---- Good, great, bad, meh, still waiting or other? Great
One track in --- Great
Halfway through --- Great
Finished --- Great

Comments: Despite apparently wanting to write a kickass rock album, REM have admitted that AftP is held together by the slow songs, and no wonder: there are eight of them. Which suits good ol' ballad-loving Troll! Interesting how many tracks I know on this and didn't realise it. Other than the two smash singles of course. I like the acoustic feel of “Drive” and the slightly waltzy “Try not to breathe”. The organ is nice too. There's a bit of a kick needed though and it comes in the shape of “The sidewinder sleeps tonight”, then “Everybody hurts” is my favourite REM song ever, of the admittedly few I've heard. Just love that song.

“Sweetness follows” has a nice sort of folky feel with what sounds like a jew's harp but probably isn't, as the album slides back into low gear after “Sidewinder”, then back up a little for “Ignoreland” but back to snail pace for the lovely, almost proggy “Star me kitten” and of course I know “Man on the moon”, leaving me with “Nightswimming” and “Find me the river”, both of which I like.

Favourite track(s): Pretty much everything; of the ones I didn't know Nightswimming and Star me kitten stand out for me
Least favourite track(s): None

Final impression --- Could this be what they call a shoegaze album these days? Well no, but it definitely has a lot of slow tracks; I can't say I really dislike any of it. Can't compare it to other REM albums as I haven't heard any, but for an entry point it's pretty cool. Quite liked this. Doesn't push me to listen to more REM, but I wouldn't be averse. Stipe's voice does start to grind on my nerves a little by the end of the album though.

Do I feel, at the end, A) I wish I had listened to this sooner
B) I'm sorry I bothered
C) I might end up liking this
D) Have to wait and see
E) Bit underwhelmed; was ok but a classic?
F) Definitely enjoyed it, but again would I consider it a classic?
G) Enjoyed this album just purely on its own merits


Added in a new category, as I don't think I could choose any of the others, so this is the first ever G rating.
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Old 09-24-2014, 02:01 PM   #252 (permalink)
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I'd like to see your opinion on Murmur. That's also R.E.M.
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Old 09-24-2014, 03:34 PM   #253 (permalink)
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AFTP is such a great album. They should have stopped there, it would have been the perfect swansong to an amazing career.
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Old 09-24-2014, 04:53 PM   #254 (permalink)
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I just noticed there's an album & band I thought would be on your list that isn't.....

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Old 09-24-2014, 06:15 PM   #255 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Briks View Post
I'd like to see your opinion on Murmur. That's also R.E.M.
Well I did say I'm trying to keep to just one album per artiste, so that the list doesn't get too unmanageable...
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Originally Posted by Urban Hat€monger ? View Post
I just noticed there's an album & band I thought would be on your list that isn't.....

Ooh yeah! I've heard a few Hawkwind albums. They can be great, weird, baffling but always interesting. I'll be adding this one. Thanks.
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Old 09-25-2014, 01:53 PM   #256 (permalink)
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I like this journal. Maybe something like this would push me to spend time listening to my wishlist items. As I've gone through my yearly top 10s, I've also made note of classics from each year that I've never heard - at least those that seem interesting to me. There's probably an average of 10-15 for each year.
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Old 09-25-2014, 02:36 PM   #257 (permalink)
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The Auteurs - New Wave (1993)

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Old 09-25-2014, 03:57 PM   #258 (permalink)
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^^
In my capacity as official Luke Haines fanboy I feel it's my duty to second this
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Old 09-25-2014, 04:48 PM   #259 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trollheart View Post
“Everybody hurts” is my favourite REM song ever
Get out.

No, but seriously, Murmur, Reckoning, and Lifes Rich Pageant are all albums I would call classic. This may be the snobby elitist in me talking, but I definitely would not say the same thing about AFTP.
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Old 09-25-2014, 08:44 PM   #260 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josef K View Post
Get out.

No, but seriously, Murmur, Reckoning, and Lifes Rich Pageant are all albums I would call classic. This may be the snobby elitist in me talking, but I definitely would not say the same thing about AFTP.
Murmur and Lifes Rich Pageant, yes. But I always thought Reckoning was by far their worst album for IRS.
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