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Adam Scott Aukerman make a splash this week as they discuss R.E.M.’s twelfth studio album, Reveal. We’ll find out who wins the award for “worst guy” and where the boys found themselves on the May 14th, 2001 release date before they dive into the album track-by-track. Plus, they plot out a hat trick in an episode of “Great Docs.”

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Pixar Kelly and that pitch for Cars 4! Damnit, I'm still wheezing. Scott and Scott are the gifts that keep on giving.

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All the Way to Reno is my least favorite REM song, but Beat A Drum is in my top ten. I liked the album a lot when it came out, but it wore me out after about six months or so... This is about where I started to drop off as a fan. I was still excited for Around the Sun, but lost interest in that even quicker than I did with Reveal. Up, for me, was really REM's last great album and I can listen to everything up to Up and still love it all the way through...

Uh, anyway - love this podcast. Can't wait for them to interview Peter $

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I found Scott talking about Reveal to be really interesting. He seems to think of it as a sunny, summer sort of record, but I take the opposite view: there's a few summery songs but overall the feel is super moody, and that's my favorite thing about it. I remember listening to it a lot during my first year in a cold climate. The 'summer' view of the record though is common perception but I think it's because there's a song called "Beachball" and another that mentions summer. The music itself is often slower, darker, subtle, and those are my favorites here.

 

"Chorus and the Ring" is one of my favorites. "Imitation Of Life" is stunning, so is "The Lifting." I never liked "Reno" much, a few others are just pointless. But as a full record, it is fine, and think that records that lack cohesiveness can often overcome it by being moody. That said, by REM's very high standards, it's not amazing.

 

I am sure the Around The Sun episode will be utterly fascinating...

 

Current album rankings:

 

1. Automatic For The People

2. Fables of the Reconstruction

3. New Adventures In Hi-Fi

4. Murmur

5. Reckoning

6. Out Of Time

7. Document

8. Monster

9. Up

10. Life's Rich Pageant

11. Reveal

12. Green

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I agree with AlmostAGhost - maybe the bright yellow and orange packaging helps it seem summery and happy, but the main vibe is sort of sad/wistful.

 

I'm surprised neither scott nor scott mentioned the Dalkey Demo of Beat A Drum. I think it's probably better than the album version.

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The last album where R.E.M. is actually trying.

 

1. Automatic for the People

2. Document

3. Up

4. Green

5. New Adventures in Hi-Fi

6. Monster

7. Lifes Rich Pageant

8. Fables of the Reconstruction

9. Murmur

10. Reveal

11. Reckoning

12. Out of Time

 

songs ranked:

 

1. I’ve Been High

2. I'll Take the Rain

3. Imitation of Life

4. The Lifting

5. Disappear

6. All the Way to Reno (You’re Gonna Be a Star)

7. Beat a Drum

8. Chorus and the Ring

9. Summer Turns to High

10. Beachball

11. Saturn Return

12. She Just Wants to Be

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I tried resequencing, but mostly just ended up switching sides with "Imitation Of Life" and "She Just Wants To Be", which I consider at least as single-worthy as "I'll Take The Rain". I thought "I've Been High" would be okay on side 2, but then you'd have two songs with the word "high" in the title too close to each other. Maybe these guys really did know what they were doing.

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I can't believe Adam left off so many songs in his re-sequencing!  Was intrigued to learn about the earlier preview version of the album, had not heard about that before.

Reveal is where I both began to have trouble getting through an entire R.E.M. album and no longer had the time in my life to just listen to music in a devoted, uninterrupted fashion. I am not a huge fan of Imitation and Reno, Rain is too long and too repetitive - i find this is the album where Stipe begins to just repeat the one chorus line over and over, whereas he either didn't do that before, or changed up the emphasis/line-reading each time.... perhaps an effect of sonsg becoming needlessly long.

I love The Lifting, I've Been High, Disappear and Chorus and the Ring.

My re-sequenced Reveal:

1. The Lifting
2. I've Been High
3. All The Way To Reno
4. She Just Wants To Be
5. Beat A Drum
6. Saturn Return
7. Summer Turns To High
8. Imitation of Life
9. Disappear
10. Beachball
11. Chorus and the Ring

 

I would likely include Fascinating on here also, but can not find a copy anywhere online.... if someone has a link to it, please share!
 

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