Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Collapse into Now

Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Collapse into Now

Article excerpt

COLLAPSE INTO NOW

R.E.M. (Nonesuch Records, 2011)

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

From a clamorous crescendo built slowly of distorted guitars, high-toned bass, and low, rumbling drums, R.E.M. front man Michael Stipe exclaims, "Hey baby, this is not a challenge, it just means that I love you as much as I always said I did" A few tension-filled bars later each musical strand coalesces into a powerful refrain that witnesses Stipe's exuberant declaration, "Discoverer!"

Thus begins the masterful new album Collapse into Now by R.E.M., a band that in the early 1980s emerged onto the music scene with an enthralling blend of fast, pretty, and pounding punk rock songs that compelled fans to sing along to lyrics that were as captivating as they were indecipherable. By the late '80s songs such as "It's The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" became distinctive underground anthems while the 1990s saw stunning hits like "Everybody Hurts" achieve unheralded popular success. …

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