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R.E.M.

Reckoning [Deluxe Edition]

Release Date: 06/23/2009
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Price: $29.98 $22.98

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Like the deluxe edition of Murmur, the 2009 expansion of Reckoning contains none of the scattered B-sides and outtakes rounded up the 1992 U.K. reissue. Most of these stray songs wound up on Dead Letter Office or the bonus disc of And I Feel Fine anyway, so this no great loss, and the live show from the ~Aragon Ballroom in 1984 that takes up the second disc is a great gain, particularly as it contains early versions of "Driver 8" and "Hyena," the latter performed two years prior to its appearance on Lifes Rich Pageant. As a whole, this concert doesn't crackle like the Toronto show added to the 25th Anniversary edition of Murmur: the band is a bit tighter and the sound is bit more open, so it winds up lacking the furious rush of that highly adrenalized Toronto concert. Nevertheless, the ~Aragon show shares much of the same ragged spirit, the band playing with a joyful abandon, a spirit that straightens out the ethereal elements of their earliest work and provides one hell of a good time. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi

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