Zachary Cole Smith has overcome a multitude of problems to make this intensely powerful album
REM : Imitation Of Life
Hard musical currency that's still desired tender the world over.
of REM's last album, and the widespread whisper that Stipe and co might have mined their last pop ore, 'Imitation Of Life' comes on like a platinum AmEx card actually made of platinum. Not only do REM still have the tunes, then; they have abundant offshore stashes of the most glittering ones imaginable, hard musical currency that's still desired tender the world over.
'Imitation Of Life' draws on the kind of vintage REM the people demand: 'Shiny Happy People'
in the chorus, and something moody off 'Document' in the verse. But it's no mere fit of nostalgia. Thematically, 'Imitation' sounds like Stipe's
side of a conversation about fame and starlust that he might have had with Courtney Love around the time of Hole's 'Celebrity Skin': "That's sugarcane that tasted good/That's cinnamon/That's Hollywood/Come on come on" he breezes, a wise man to Love's hard-bitten diva. Sweet as.
The film adaptation of R.L. Stine's classic horror novels is shockingly enjoyable
A defiantly bangerless take-me-seriously-as-an-artist album that reveals new charms every time you spin it
The utterly gripping story of how The Boston Globe exposed child abuse within the Catholic church
Hitmaker-for-hire makes a silk purse out of songs rejected by Rihanna, Adele and others