Our farewell to R.E.M. playlist
You know ''Losing My Religion,'' but here are our personal picks of the best from the college-rock pioneers, who called it quits last week after 30 years and 15 albums
”Talk About the Passion”
In which Michael Stipe’s twangy French (”Combien du temps?”) is almost as endearing as Peter Buck’s shy, stutter-stepping guitar hook.
”Fall on Me”
A captivating sonic layer cake from 1986’s already-rich Lifes Rich Pageant.
”So. Central Rain”
The lesson behind this slow-burner? That love means always hearing Stipe say ”I’m sorry.”
Stipe and bassist Mike Mills (on piano) stand alone together on a singularly vulnerable ballad.
A jangly-sweet ode to the New Orleans-bound Crescent train that’s so deeply Southern, Dale Earnhardt Jr. named his autobiography after it.
”It’s the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)”
A talking-blues history of plane crashes and famous Leonards (Bruce! Bernstein!), and the defining anthem for the information-overload age.
”What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?”
Only they could turn the story of a random attack on Dan Rather into a shimmering, live-wire rocker.
”The One I Love”
Romantic angst wrapped not just in ”fire” but ”fiiii-uhuhuhhhhhr.”
”(Don’t Go Back To) Rockville”
Mills’ girlfriend moved home to Maryland, and all he got was this stellar country-rock rambler.