I am showing my future brother-in-law how to do a podcast and thought that it would be really cool to repost this podcast from about a year ago.
So if you are in the mood for some Fables songs have a listen.
While I have purchased and listened to 'Killingsworth' a couple times, I have not had a chance to digest it as of yet. IMHO, the record is much more on the somber/sad side compared to other Minus 5 efforts.
Gone are the Beach Boys sounding records like 'Let the War Against Music Begin' or the hard rock sounds of 'In Rock' but it has a much more country feel to it.
Lately, I am consumed by the fact that R.E.M. has been doing something right. Their Deluxe Editions have come out in style, received some notoriety, and even a perfect score, from the Pitchfork Crew and now they are giving us a “Tasting Menu” of some of the songs that are on the horizon.
To give all you novices, a quick Cliffs Notes version of these shows, R.E.M. decided to switch things up before the release of their last album ‘Accelerate’ and put together a set of rehearsal shows in Dublin, Ireland, while working in the studio. They picked 5 nights in the summer of 2007, to play these shows and the purpose was mainly to perform these songs in front of a live audience both for their reaction to the songs as well as the bands reaction to them.
The hope was that by “Beta Testing” these songs in front of a crowd they could figure out what worked and what didn’t. On top of performing new songs, the band also pulled out a host of older of songs they had not performed live in years. What this EP has provided however, is a more modern impression of these songs that are 25 years or even older giving depth of the offering of two guitars being played live than just one on the earlier tunes.
Ironicly, if there was a big brother to the album, “Accelerate” in the R.E.M. repertoire, ‘Reckoning’ would have to be chosen, if not for the spirit of the album as it relates to ‘Accelerate’. So it’s perfect to accelerate to ‘Reckoning’ with 4 strong songs of their own.
While Facebooking about how much I was appreciating the new EP and talking to Chuck, I figured I would gather the songs together once again.
Here is a listing of the songs that R.E.M. played in their 5 night stay in Dublin Ireland (6/30/07 - 07/05/07).
There were talks that the band would be including "Over 30" songs on this release. The band played 39 unique songs while performing in Dublin.
Chronic Town (EP)
Carnival of Sorts (Boxcars)
Gardening At Night
West of the Fields
Letter Never Sent
So. Central Rain (I'm Sorry)
Fables of the Reconstruction
Auctioneer (Another Engine)
Feeling Gravitys Pull
Maps and Legends
Lifes Rich Pageant
Disturbance at The Heron House
Welcome to the Occupation
Automatic For The People
New Adventures In Hi Fi
New Test Leper
I've Been High
Around The Sun
The Worst Joke Ever
I always like how these songs can be reintroduced to the public after so many years and quite honestly, the song has been reinvented after its 20+ year existence.
Played in 2007, this song is part of the Olympia Theatre rehearsal shows back in July 2007, and in particular was played on July 4th of that year.
R.E.M. is planning a 2-CD live release later this year as a compilation of those nights performances. Harborcoat will also be released as a 4 song EP on July 7th, in support of the Reckoning songs as a precurser to 'Live at the Olympia' that is coming this October.
I was getting concerned that Pitchfork would not give 'Reckoning' its due, but it came through just before the July 4th holiday, and never too late.
Pitchfork exploded again with giving Reckoning a perfect 10 rating, making plenty of great arguments as to its place as one of R.E.M.'s best albums:
Declaring Reckoning to be R.E.M.'s "best" album sells short just how many different kinds of great albums R.E.M. have released. But, more so than any other R.E.M. record, Reckoning is unified and energized by the very restlessness that has driven the band to explore so many different ideas and identities. It is this paradoxical engine of transparency and mystery that has made the band so unique, regardless of the particular approach they choose to take for a given record. Any way you look at it, this is R.E.M.
While they surely do not have to sell me on this news, a definitive review and perfect score continue to sell the premise of the importance of this album on rock music.
R.E.M’s Reckoning was the second full length and third major release by R.E.M. In terms of their earlier material it was a much more direct album, not relying on the studio to create an atmospheric record but rather incorporate more of the band’s live sound rather than their studio talents on Murmur and Chronic Town.
As I have written before, it was the first of their albums that I had significantly appreciated and made me yearn for more.
That being said, reissues often have the task of trying to exemplify a purpose for the release. For example, is the reissue out of print or severely needing of remastering for it to limits of technology from years prior?
In the case of these deluxe editions, the point has always been to bring a sense to the world that R.E.M. existed 25 years ago. Reckoning, and it’s predecessor ‘Murmur’ were two of the most important contributions to the decade of the 80’s slowly changing Rock music from being defined by synths and to a guitar/bass/drums genre. Along the way, R.E.M. led the way for other acts, especially from America, inspired by the Punk Movement and using the tools it provided to provide a much more free reign atmosphere for what was allowed.
R.E.M. understood Rock and Roll. They knew what worked and what was cliché. The promotion for Reckoning was unique in itself. 1984, was during the heyday of the music video. We had just seen Michael Jackson moonwalk his way into history and at the same time it was R.E.M. despising the music format and expanding on the video realm.