Album: Around The Sun
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File Under Proud
I’ve often wondered about whether or not I would have disliked Around The Sun as much as I did had it been made by another band. And while each new record by an old favorite always brings that kind of challenge — how do you balance your history with the artist against your reaction to their new music? — my gut is there is are no circumstances under which I would have liked it, as the only songs that ever jumped out at me were the “Aftermath,” “Around The Sun” and the single, “Leaving New York.”
That said, I’m awful glad that Around The Sun, Reveal, and R.E.M. Live all exist, the turn of the century, proof positive that even the greatest bands can stumble for awhile, and those records threw the awesomeness of their first two decades into sharp relief and made their late-career renaissance that much sweeter.