on 6 August 2010
Still a great album- among their best. I can't say the remaster has made quite as much of a difference as it did to Reckoning and Murmur, although Stipe's vocals do seem fractionally clearer. I also agree with the other reviewers in that the liner notes really don't do the album justice.
The second disc of demos is an interesting curiosity- basically a stripped down version of the album with a few extras. It probably won't spend a vast amount of time on my stereo but is quite fun and worth having. Maybe more so than Reckoning's live performance.
My only major complaint is the naff packaging. I like the deluxe edition packages. This is just a clumsy oversize box full of junk. The CD's themselves are held by slip-in paper sleeves which guarantees scuffs eventually. As for the poster and postcards? I'm pretty sure most of the people buying this are out of the hero-worshipping teen phase by now. Entirely pointless and badly misjudged.
This is pretty expensive- more so than previous reissues. It is worth a go though, purely down to the sheer quality of the music. Just please take Boyzone's marketing team off the next project.
on 12 July 2010
This is the REM reissue that I have been waiting for and it does not disappoint. The remastering brightens up the original release and the second disc of demos is bleak but brilliant with weary burned-out vocals from Stipe that are close to perfection. A truly great bunch of songs. For me the band's best record. It all comes in a cardboard box (why?)with a pointless poster,four unecessary postcards and Booklet with a few words from PB. Surely the marketing guys could have come up with a better package & booklet for such a great record? Doesn't anyone have Joe Boyd's telephone number? The music rates 5 stars but my rating loses one star for the poor packaging.
on 23 August 2010
This was my favourite of the early REM albums, though the least critically lauded of these - something I could never understand. The guitar intro to Feeling Gravity's Pull is a perfect introduction to this album, Maps and Legends takes it a even greater heights which are repeated all the way to Wendell Gee. The standout track for me is Old Man Kensey - quite a testament on an album full of highlights. The sound is crystal clear as a result of the remastering, though Stipe isn't always comprehensible, but would we have it any other way. Disc 2 is for completists as tends to be the case in these reissues, but intersting nonetheless.