A black silhouette of R.E.M. (from left to right: Peter Buck, Michael Stipe, and Mike Mills) stand in front of a white background with yellow and orange lines. The words "R.E.M. / COLLAPSE / INTO / NOW" are written in black.

  • R.E.M.- COLLAPSE INTO NOW: 2011: 3 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The final R.E.M. album before breaking up- 15 studio albums. They went out with a decent album. I have longed looked at R.E.M. as being the first half great and the second half a disappointment but in going over all the albums- while certainly the R.E.M of the 80’s and early 90’s they were at their best- there were good albums and fine moments over the last seven albums-New Adventures In Hi-Fi and Accelerate especially stand out- the only downright bad album of their career in my opinion- Around The Sun. A pretty stellar band for 30 years.


  • U2: POP: 1977: 1 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: I am a big U2 fan- and when any album comes out of course I want to love the album. This is a dud. I have always disliked it {My friend Franz loves it-  but I’ve told him don’t expect a 30th anniversary Pop Tour} I will at least give them the credit- they could have gone out and made The Joshua Tree 2 or Achtung Baby 2 but they weren’t repeating themselves- they did have some ambition here but the songs aren’t good and the music- the techno-dance-electronica overload here -seems like an aging band trying to be hip with the times. Harry Callahan once said “A man’s got to know his limitations.”- same with a band do what you are good at. U2 you aren’t a techno band.

The Gilded Palace of Sin.jpg

  • THE FLYING BURRITO BROTHERS: THE GILDED PALACE OF SIN: 1969: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS:  A landmark album of country-rock- ex- Byrd’s Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman. The album would be an influence to generations of artists from country to Americana. One of those influential albums that was under the radar as far as commercial success went though it peaked at #164 on the album chart. Highlights- Sin City, My Uncle, Hot Burrito #1, Hippie Boy and two R&B covers-Do Right Woman and Dark End Of The Street.


  • YEAR OF WONDER: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Actually not an album. I came across a recent book called Year Of Wonder which for each day of the year highlights a classical music work. On Apple Music they have the playlists for the book. Today I listened to the January playlist in its 2 hour 45 minutes entirety. A variety of different music- enjoyable to take a break from the usual and listen to some music that I am not very familiar or knowledgeable about.


    • Thanks. That was the first time I have heard it- and a few of the songs were familiar. A friend of mine stayed last summer at the motel where Gram Parsons died. He tried to get the same room but it was already occupied.

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