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Reckoning [Original recording remastered]

R.E.M. Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: 13.89 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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Biography

R.E.M. was an American rock band formed in Athens, Georgia, USA, in 1980 by Michael Stipe (lead vocals), Peter Buck (guitar), Mike Mills (bass guitar and backing vocals), and Bill Berry (drums and percussion). R.E.M. was one of the first popular alternative rock bands, and gained early attention due to Buck's ringing, arpeggiated guitar style and Stipe's unclear vocals. R.E.M. released ... Read more in Amazon's R.E.M. Store

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Reckoning + MURMUR + Document (Remastered)
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Product details

  • Audio CD (3 Aug 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Universal/I.R.S.
  • ASIN: B0027WNRK4
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 72,572 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         


Disc 1:

Samples
Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Harborcoat 3:540.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. 7 Chinese Bros. 4:140.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. So. Central Rain 3:140.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Pretty Pursuasion 3:500.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Time After Time (Annelise) 3:300.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Second Guessing 2:490.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Letter Never Sent 3:000.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Camera (Original Album Version) 5:510.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. (Don't Go Back To) Rockville (DO NOT USE) 4:330.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Little America (Original Album Version) 3:420.99  Buy MP3 


Disc 2:

Samples
Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Femme Fatale (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:180.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Radio Free Europe (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:540.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Gardening At Night (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:380.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. 9-9 (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 2:470.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Windout (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 2:130.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Letter Never Sent (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:030.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Sitting Still (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:120.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Driver 8 (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:270.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. So. Central Rain (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:230.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. 7 Chinese Bros. (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 4:270.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Harborcoat (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 4:340.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. Hyena (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:260.99  Buy MP3 
Listen13. Pretty Pursuasion (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:480.99  Buy MP3 
Listen14. Little America (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:230.99  Buy MP3 
Listen15. Second Guessing (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 3:070.99  Buy MP3 
Listen16. (Don't Go Back To) Rockville (Live / 1984 Aragon Ballroom) 4:290.99  Buy MP3 


Product Description

BBC Review

The second album from the Athens, Georgia band builds solidly on the muddy foundations of their debut; showing a more expansive sound from Peter Buck's guitar, that jangles, flirts with and teases Mike Mills' chirpy bass lines; all driven along by Bill Berry's muscular drumming. There's an upbeat, cheery swagger to the mix, with only a couple of tracks allowed to meander off like Sunday afternoon garage-band jams.

The major change in their sound however comes from Michael Stipe's fresh-laundered and sweet smelling vocals, that surface from the swamp-like sound of Murmur (their appropriately titled first album) to take a far more active role. When he shakes off his air of lethargic, suburban ennui, he lets an enormous passionate energy shine through, and it brightens up the whole R.E.M. experience.

Stipe is as querulous and apparently amazed by the modern world that he digs into here, but appears far more confident, if just as intriguingly obscure, as a lyricist. His elegant delivery, pitched in the lower register, demands comparison with the contemporary work of The Smiths over in Manchester, but Stipe's wry faux-innocence couldn't be anything but late-twentieth century American.

Although there's more than a hint of the Byrds' one-time fascination with harmony and a twelve-string Rickenbacker in its production, the set taken as a whole shows that R.E.M. remain ferociously indie and seemingly uninterested in mainstream success, secure in the embrace of their growing hometown audience, and happy to continue their thorough exploration of conventional rock format and song structures. --Al Spicer

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Product Description

REM Reckoning (2009 issue UK Deluxe Edition 2-CD album set - Reckoning their second album confirms R.E.M. as one of the most beautifully exciting groups on the planet wrote the NME in 1984. Twenty-five years later the album remains a fan favorite for capturing R.E.M. during the youthful freshness of a new fiercely independent American music scene. This 2-disc edition comprises the 10-track digitally remastered album; plus a Bonus 16-track CD including a previously unreleased concert recorded on the bands Little America tour at Chicagos Aragon Ballroom on July 7th 1984 with not only performances of eight of Reckonings ten songs but also Gardening At Night [from 1982s Chronic Town EP] Radio Free Europe 9-9 & Sitting Still [from Murmur] but also new songs that had yet to make it onto tape: Driver 8 would later debut on R.E.M.s third album and Hyena on their fourth. Comes complete with a picture booklet containing sleevenotes by noted author and REM biographer Tony Fletcher)

Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Athens' finest's finest hour? 30 Jun 2009
Format:Audio CD
Rock'n'roll is like comedy: the secret's in the timing.
The first time I saw REM was in Dublin's half-full SFX hall way back in 1984. It was their first Irish show, and they were touring behing Reckoning. All those years ago I remember that Murmur wasn't readily available (in Ireland) until Reckoning appeared. Reckoning - their second full LP - remains one of my all time favourites.
As with so many other albums from the pre-cd era my previous cd copies of Reckoning sounded paper thin thanks to hurried transfers of god knows what generation tapes. The LP always had a great big kick to it and approximated what the band sounded like on stage: Berry & Mills' pounding drum'n'bass allowing Buck and Stipe to weave their respective spells.
I'm hard pressed to separate this from Murmur but it is such a magical collection of songs, richly textured and so beautifully played and sung and it really shows the band taking flight.
This is a joy of an album, full of cracking good songs that tumble one after another and it really shows them all working at the top of their young games. Things changed for the band (not that the albums got worse, just different) and this catches them at the peak of a sparkling, joyous and fabulous period of creativity.
Yes, Buck's guitars chime and spiral and turn, and Stipe is at his mumbly jumbly best - but this album's (and the band's) secret weapon is fully unleashed for the first time: Mills' harmony work (part Band, part Byrds, part Pylon, all Athens).
Do yourself a favour and add this to your basket right now.
The bonus disc is tremendous fun, capturing what the band were like as they shifted from bars to clubs and began cementing their reputation as one of the best live bands of the early 80s.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great garage 18 Dec 2009
Format:Audio CD
I grew up listening to The Velvet Underground, Beatles, Stones, The Who and still am an avid music listener albeit a bit stuck in the past. my daughter introduced me to REM and all that changed. I have all their stuff and this CD rocks, in music, sound quality and every song a pearl. The live cd has that wonderful garage feel, warts an all that is so lacking in todays music and shows how far REM have come.
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4.0 out of 5 stars purchased for a friend 18 Feb 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Can only say that my friend was completely satisfied with tihs purchase.
Any 'lovers' of REM would be happy with this.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars R.E.M Reckoning Deluxe 5 Sep 2009
Format:Audio CD
This album represented my introduction to R.E.M when it came out all those years ago. It still sounds as fresh now as it did then with excellent tunes and lyrics (did anyone ever decipher what Michael Stipe was actually singing about in the early days?).
For me this group were at their finest and most inventive in their early albums - always striving to be just that bit different, always pushing the boundaries at a time when pop music was dominated by synthesised tacky pop.
In the 80's very few groups stood up for the traditional guitar based format and R.E.M were a shining beacon of light in a very mundane period of music.
Buy this album!
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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  17 reviews
84 of 92 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars American rock at the crossroads 24 Jun 2009
By Garbageman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
A couple of universal arguments before considering this release:

1. The entire IRS catalog of REM albums including the "Chronic Town" EP, with the exception of only a handful of songs buried on later albums, is pretty much untouchable in the pantheon of American independent rock. Anyone who thinks otherwise is either 14 or younger, or was listening exclusively to Spandau Ballet and Visage at the time.

2. "Dead Letter Office" exists for a reason, and I'm happy it does. Maybe it'll be beefed up and reissued later, maybe not; but REM decided not to clutter their original albums in re-released form with supplementary distractions, and it was a good decision. I don't want to hear "White Tornado" after "Little America", nor do I need it on a second CD for chronological or historical reasons.

3. The live REM show attached to this reissue is astounding. It's even more powerful than the stellar show attached to "Murmur". Had it stood alone as its own release I would have considered it one of their best releases ever. I've had this classic show for a long time on cassette, and we used to tease it was a punk band playing an REM set. It's so brutal and powerful and direct and honest, you'd think this was a band with 10 confident years under their belt.

So if you buy those general arguments about the package, then you might also share my outlook on the content: "Reckoning" is the most REM of REM albums. It contains some of their most profound moments: "Rockville"'s elegantly Southern piano, the accents of bells, chimes, and found objects in "Camera" and "Time After Time" (thanks, Mitch & Don), "7 Chinese Brothers"' byzantine clang, the chorus in "Letter Never Sent", and the insane urgency of "Pretty Persuasion", where Michael's lyrics disintegrate into total chaos because they have nowhere to go. It also contains what might be their very best single song (next to "Fall On Me", personally): "So. Central Rain", which has no equal in the "dark REM song" category and would preview an even darker album to follow. There's a general vibe of anything-goes on "Reckoning", a way of seeing that seldom works with bands who don't have a clue what they're doing other than what they already know. In REM's case by this time, they were defining who they were, and came out with a picture-perfect set which laid the foundation for blah blah blah. This is easily one of the most essential albums of the 80's, and if it isn't their finest hour, it's certainly their most confident. That such confidence came so quickly, and was so bright and passionate and intense that it started a revolution, is evidence of its excellence.
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I reckon this reissue is worthwhile to pick up since we have a 1984 concert don't sell your original CDs just yet though... 4 July 2009
By Wayne Klein - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Elvis Costello once suggested that much of the music of the 1980's was a wasteland. One band and album I'm sure he wasn't referring to was REM and "Reckoning".

I'm not sure if "Reckoning" is REM's finest moment but it certainly is ONE of their finest albums. The band's second album (not counting their EP "Chronic Town")found them expanding on the sound from their "Chronic Town" EP and "Murmur" album giving us more with less--the arrangements are more direct and the performances even more energetic than their debut album. Veering towards Americana and all of its variety in the sounds on the album, "Reckoning" marked a major step forward for one of America's most important bands to come out of the 80's.

Greg Calbi's mastering improves on the original CD in some ways but isn't quite as strong as the limited edition Gold CD that Mobile Fidelity put out a decade ago. Detail is clearer but the album is noticeably louder than previous editions diminishing both the dynamic range and occasionally the power of some songs. That said, "Reckoning" sounds extremely good even if it was compromised somewhat during the mastering process (Calbi tried to keep as much dynamics as possible but keep in mind he was a hired hand and had to do what his bosses asked him to do). Michael Stipe's lyrics are as cryptic as ever but also a bit clearer. Mike Mills' ("Don't Go Back)To Rockville" (a song that Mills wrote for a girlfriend at while still in college)got reworked for the album at a more leisurely time signature creating a hit when it appeared on college radio in 1984.

The real gem here though is the second disc of a live performance. Although it is missing a couple of the tracks that have appeared on bootlegs that have circulated for years, it's a very good concert performance with the band on fire with energetic readings of material from their first, second and even one track each from what would be their third and fourth albums. Opening with The Velvet Underground "Femme Fatale" the band then jumps into their first single "Radio Free Europe" and finally closes with a powerful reading of ("Don't Go Back)To Rockville)"

EDIT: Just a note on Michael Stipe's singing. A couple of people have complained that he's off-key here on a number of tracks. Yep. This is a warts and all concert. The performance of the band itself is electrifying but the purpose of including this concert was to show how the band WAS during this tour and we get an accurate picture of that. They could have cleaned up the vocal using Pro-Tools and let Michael redub his signing. Instead, the band chose to let it stand warts and all. That's what I love about R.E.M.--like The Band they never apologize for their mistakes just present the music as it is/was and let the fans decide if its worthwhile to pick up their music. Personally, I kind of find it charming as this was only their second album and second major tour (not counting the "Chronic Town" EP of course).

END OF EDIT:

My only complaint is that the original album was short enough to allow the inclusion of the some of the singles included on the import version released a couple of years ago. That edition included "Windout", "Moon River", another version of "Pretty Persuasion" recorded live in the studio and "Tighten Up" the classic song originally recorded by Archie Bell and the Drells. It would have made this collection a bit more complete. Yes, I realize that many of these songs appeared on the collection "And I Feel Fine" but the mastering there by David McEowen was less than ideal.

The packaging is typical for these "Deluxe Editions" where the CD packaging fits inside a slipcase. There is also a fold out "booklet" that includes an essay on the recording of the album and a full color album sized poster of the original album cover on the flip side. Overall, this is a fine set with a nice remaster done by Calbi and if you factor in the concert I reckon you'll probably want to pick up this classic album again.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Take A Left Turn To Little America 26 Jun 2009
By Philip S. Wolf - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
By 1984, the path of popular music was an eight lane toll road of synthesizers and drum machines. Angry drivers, were not even paying attention to where they were going. There was no soul or any answers at the end of this highway....To be outta control and speeding to the beat, meant you were in the center of nothing. In all this emptiness, you at last, were surrounded by everyone else, blind to the beautiful view all around them, as if they were machines from a science fiction movie....1984.

From a back country path deep in the South, along comes R.E.M.
This band of light and energy crossed the highway so quickly and headed back into the woods, that hardly anyone payed them any attention. I was lucky to have seen them cross the interstate, and I went exploring in the woods, searching for answers.

Deep into a green forest, I found guitars and drums and words that became strange shapes and forms. Everything else was on the outside of the woods, nothing else was as important as this. I abandoned the eighties, as something better was to be found in this forest....Here, I found hope.

"Reckoning" is my favorite album from R.E.M.
This record, rocks as much as it talks.
"Pretty Persuation" "Harborcoat" "(Don't Go Back To) Rockville" "7 Chinese Brothers" "Second Guessing" & "So. Central Rain" are enough music to fill a Greatest Hits record, from any other band. The surprise here is that this is only a second full album of songs from a band that had been touring the South, in a station wagon playing crazy gigs anywhere that would have them.

The sound has improved to the original record, and that in itself is a big deal. But at last the Chicago show that was broadcast in July 1984 (and bootlegged to death) gives us a listen to R.E.M's part of that night from the Aragon Ballroom. Opening act, The Dream Syndicate, released their set in 1984 as: "This Is Not The New Dream Syndicate Album...Live!"
Everything, that Reckoning was on vinyl, all but erupts in concert. Early R.E.M. was a touring band of faith-healers looking for converts in every town in their path. The entire show is not on this disc, but enough is here to prove to the world, what a few already knew...R.E.M. were young and spiky, but seasoned and professional, all at the same time.

As R.E.M. was the bridge from the 1960's into the 1980's, this band effected the music that would blast forth from Seattle in the early 1990's. This record, is as important as it is fun to experience.
"Reckoning" is best album of the eighties.
FIVE STARS!!!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great album 13 Jan 2012
By Rohit R - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Reckoning a double album from the band's IRS years is a classic especially this deluxe edition. this album features some of their greatest songs and is highly recommended.
4.0 out of 5 stars R.E.M.! 14 Jun 2014
By Kurk Schoner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This was the first REM album I discovered while stationed in the U.S. Army back in 1982 or '83. I still have a soft spot in my head for it.
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