R.E.M. – Bang and Blame

This stupid single has live versions of “Losing My Religion” and “Country Feedback” and “Begin the Begin” as well as a version of the title track that, despite being labeled the “Album Version” is unlike the album version in that it skips the stupid 45 second wheezy instrumental after the dumb track.

And it is a dumb, stupid single. What’s the damned point? There’s a decent enough bass groove, but the wham line of “you bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, and blame, blame, blame” is among the album’s least suited for the album’s brand of dad rock. The album’s strength is centered on lyrical content, and this song has next to none of that, just a vague notion of a lover or criminal, and I have no idea why this was the second single. It did make it into a Weird Al polka, so that’s something. But yeah, blah.

You know what I think of live tracks, but at least these are some nice ones. Hey, maybe you like hearing “Losing My Religion” with a weak vocal performance and lots of cheering and electric guitar, and who could ever tire of hearing the fucking beautiful “Country Feedback” and the genuinely rockin’ “Begin the Begin” other than a wacky psychopath? Sure, there are better ways to hear all of those songs, but they’re pretty sweet here too!

It’s technically Christmas morning, and I hate the holidays. I feel like posting on craigslist that I want to find people who won’t judge me for getting blackout drunk. Nobody I know is enough like me. Everybody is just enough like me that I think they might know me, but then they let me down grumble grumble.

I watched the first few episodes of American Horror Story with my guests earlier tonight, on the recommendation of threesome girl. Did I mention I had a threesome? It was pretty great. I was literally puking that night and nervous to boot, but it looks like I did enough that we’re good for another if I push it, and the girl was a worthy modern character study. Thanks, girlfriend! And you’re welcome for the copious amount of oral sex. But not an R.E.M. song. Fuck, “Country Feedback” and “Begin the Begin” are good songs. Man, have you HEARD this shit? These lyrics are just stupid deep!

FUCK R.E.M. were a good band back in the day. If you don’t respect you get no respect. The good songs are legion. But “Bang and Blame” is not goddamn one of them. Ugh.

6 / 10


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