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I spent the last month listening to every REM studio album in chronological order - Why?

Why did I do this? It is definitely not a topic, which attracts a lot of readers. I disappointed some people, who thought I was writing about sleep cycles (people tend to think I'm smarter and a lot less silly than I am). Another friend of mine was surprised anyone could have REM as their favourite band. So why did I spent this much time on silly blog posts about a band I had not thought about for the past 20 years (god, I'm old), which no one wanted to read about? And was it worth it?

Yes, it was worth it. When I started I was in a strange state of stress and boredom. Sitting around an empty work place with a pandemic raging. It is a natural reaction for people to escape into childhood nostalgia during times of great insecurity. I could have just listened to the albums I had brought from Germany last Christmas and in March and April last year, it was what I did. Once I started to write though, a way to communicate my thoughts out of my empty office, I found the therapeutic value in it. Consuming media passively is one thing, sitting down and actively letting your thoughts be occupied with a topic unrelated to all the anxiety inducing happenings around me ended up being occupational therapy. It helped me out of the anxiety spiral I tend to fall into, helped me get my focus back and last but not least, made me happy.

I feel a bit at a loss now, after a year of writing these posts I will miss it (only one playlist post left). They were a lot of fun to write. I had not really thought of REM for a long time and I'm glad to have rediscovered them. I had forgotten how deeply entwined their music was with my formative years.

Some notes:
  • During all the posts, I wrote REM instead of R.E.M. I know this is wrong, but laziness won out here. I think I saved myself from typing hundreds of ".".

  • I do not vouch for any of the "facts" in any of the posts. I'm already a lazy researcher for topics that matter and here I often relied on memories of things I thought I read 25 years years ago.

  • I learned in the little research I did that I hold some unpopular REM opinions: I seem to be the only REM fan, who does not like "Don't go back to Rockville". I also seem to be one of the few people who still likes "Reveal". Of course it all comes down to taste with music in the end, but I'm right everyone else is wrong.

  • There is something to be learned from their retirement. Bill Berry is the poster child here, but even the others seem just so content to have given up stardom and concentrate on things that make them happy.



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