Guitarist Peter Buck admits the group's new material is definitely more sombre in light of events in their country...

The R.E.M songs written in the wake of September 11 have taken a “dark and complex” direction, according to guitarist PETER BUCK.

The group have tentatively started writing in recent months towards new songs that may feature on the follow-up to this year’s ‘Reveal’ longplayer.

Writing in his regular column for Q magazine, Buck said the songs written before or after September 11 fit into “two categories”.

He said: “The new songs, unsurprisingly, can be divided into two categories; those written before 11 September and those written after. The summer songs are pretty poppy and uptempo, while the later ones are kind of dark and complex. Maybe there’s a record in there somewhere but Mike (Mills) and I will keep waiting, if only to figure out where we’re going.”

Any new R.E.M material is unlikely to be released before the autumn of 2002.