This Week’s #TapeTuesday! R.E.M. “Monster”

Here's your #TapeTuesday. After two folksy, haunted albums (Out Of Time and Automatic For the People) R.E.M. took a 4 day vacation to Acapulco, Mexico in 1993 to plan out the next two years for the band. The outcome was the idea to stage their first world tour since 1989 and the guys decided to record a new album that actually rocked. Recorded in Atlanta most of the albums basic tracks were recorded live in the studio. Several things hampered the sessions. Bill Berry and Mike Mills both had nasty colds and in early 1994 both River Phoenix and Kurt Cobain passed away, leaving singer Michael Stipe in an odd place: How do you make a dumb, loud glam rock album and also address these tragedies? Sessions moved from Atlanta to Miami and then to Los Angeles. Stipe had a breakthrough when he decided to sing a few of the songs in character. "What's The Frequency, Kenneth?" The albums first single had a weird back story. TV reporter Dan Rather was attacked on the streets of New York City in 1986 while his assailant repeated the phrase. "Crush With Eyeliner" featured a loud, distorted tremolo guitar and background vocals by Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth. Monster would go on to sell 4 million copies in the US, but was considered a flop after the massive success of their previous two albums. The world tour was also plagued with issues. On March 1st, 1995 drummer Bill Berry suffered a brain aneurysm on stage being the beginning of the end for Bill's future in R.E.M. Monster is also considered one of the most manufactured compact discs of the era, currently populating dollar bins everywhere with a worth of $.0001 (OK, I made this fact up but still.) It remains a great, loud album in a hugely influential career. Purchased at Coconuts Music & Video March 1995. #REM #MichaelStipe #MikeMills #PeterBuck #BillBerry #Monster #ScottLitt #WhatsTheFrequencyKenneth #CrushWithEyeliner #StrangeCurrencies #Star69

A post shared by Andy Derer (@andyderer) on

Every Tuesday night I have been posting a picture of a cassette tape from my collection. When I first fell in love with rock music, it was February 1995, I was 11 years old, and I was forced to buy cassette tapes instead of the then fashionable compact disc. To commemorate 20 years in love with rock music I decided to start #TapeTuesday. Here is the latest. Follow me on Instagram @andyderer.


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