R.E.M. – Aftermath

I’d really like to find out if you’re as interesting as you look, so girl are you a beaver cuz dammmm.

Truthfully (and have I ever been less that that?), my biggest memory of this single is not about the music itself. I know, I know, you’d have thought that this single of an album track from 2003 R.E.M. would be important in my life, this single that features not only the bland album track “Aftermath” but also two live songs from soundtracks, but no. My memory of this single comes from way back in the summer of 2005, when, in a music store with my girlfriend at the time, I bought this single for $9.99 while she wasn’t looking. Later, on the subway, I revealed that I had in fact spent my money on a piece of music ephemera, and she was not pleased. So we argued, her point being that I shouldn’t be stupid and mine that it was my money to spend as I wanted, and it turned into quite the public argument if I remember correctly, one that culminated in a tense discussion in Christie Pits park about whether or not we should break up. We didn’t at the time, but that’s all laughs.

I still think I was right to decide what I wanted to do with my money, but she was sure right that this was a stupid, useless purchase. “Aftermath’ is pleasant but bland and who cares, and the live tracks – ‘So Fast, So Numb” and “All The Right Friends” – aren’t even properly live; they’re from soundchecks, meaning there isn’t even any crowd interactions. The former sounds just like the studio version and the latter only differs in having more annoying vocals during the annoying bridge.

So whatever to this single, because it’s terrible. I guess the band had to put out something at this point, but it’s still a joke. This single’s existence is pointless and absurd, and certainly an example of the wasteful nothing we pumped out as part of the music industry back in the day of the single. If you’re a smart person and you realize the meaninglessness of the universe and the genuinely awesome and wonderful things in life, that this single exists it totally ridiculous. So okay, fine, by all means, exist, single, I don’t hate you, I think you’re meaningless bullshit, and I’m glad I no longer have to tolerate the fact you exist.

No, you speak to things that are barely objects. I want my life to be like RNA so that it has U in it, that’s what I think. I love you DON’T GO.

3 / 10


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