So the fine fellas over at Stereogum have whipped up another one of their patented all-indie-star birthday tributes to the seminal albums of any self-respecting thirtysomething’s life, this time in honor of R.E.M.’s Automatic for the People, which turns 15 this week, thus officially placing my senior year of high school in the “long, long ago” category. Folks like the Meat Puppets, T&S’s Sara Quin, Shout Out Louds, and Rogue Wave have reimagined the album’s twelve tracks, complete with “liner notes” from the bands and an essay from Fluxblog’s Matthew Perpetua.
But unlike my rapturous response to Stereogum’s treatment of Radiohead and Ok Computer, I can’t say I’m in love with any of the songs here. With the exception of the Forms’ “Ignoreland” — which gets stripped down to a funky, fuzzy stomp — and Dr. Dog’s “Find the River”, I find these tweaked versions sort of grating and hard to make it through. Maybe there’s something more malleable about Radiohead’s sound, maybe I’m just in a crabbier mood today. Or maybe I’ve just listened my beloved Automatic more times than anyone ever should and am intolerant of change. You decide: mp3s stream after the jump, or download the whole thing here.
you should see the stereogum.com drive xv player here if you have flash