REM album update

Band are 'two thirds to three quarters' through LP

R.E.M are close to finishing their new album.

The band plan to release the follow-up to 2004’s ‘Around The Sun’ in the spring of 2008.

The band, who are working with Bloc Party and Snow Patrol producer Jacknife Lee, played five shows in Dublin in late June and early July as a “working rehearsal” to test out several of the new songs.

Speaking about the record bassist Mike Mills told Billboard: “We’ve got another three weeks of recording and singing and what little overdubbing we’re gonna do.

Michael (Stipe)’s got a bunch of singing and I’ve got some background to do, and we’ve got a couple of songs we hope Michael will finish. And then after the next three weeks or so it’s the mixing phase.”

Mills said that there wasn’t “a whole lot over overdubbing on this record”. However, he added that himself and the rest of the band “made an agreement we weren’t going to say what it is or not because we don’t want to have expecatations out there in any direction.

“But of course you can go on YouTube and listen to some of the Dublin shows and get a pretty good idea of where we’re going.”

Speaking about working with Jacknife Lee, Mills said he was “fantastic. He’s just what we needed at this stage of our career. He’s very willing to experiment. He keeps things loose. It’s a fun process; he just realises this is something we’re all lucky to be able to do, and we’re all enjoying it as much as possible”.

The band are set to release a live CD/DVD package called ‘REM Live’ on October 15.