R.E.M. Wonders If Living Deutsch Is The Best Revenge

fluxington | July 17, 2008 5:00 am

Soundchecks often serve as safe zones for musicians, a place where they can feel free to goof off and take chances that might not be suitable for an audience of people who’ve paid big money to hear straight versions of their favorite songs. R.E.M., however, is a bit less precious about the moment’s sanctity; the band’s 1996 album New Adventures In Hi-Fi is partially comprised of music recorded at soundchecks, and more recently, the band opted to share a peculiar version of their song “Living Well Is The Best Revenge” recorded before a concert in Dresden. The tune starts off about the same as the version that appears on Accelerate, but by the final minute, the drums have gone a bit haywire, and MIchael Stipe has started singing in a strange, quasi-Germanic accent. It’s a funny moment, and it’s nice that the band has enough confidence to let fans hear it mess around. [R.E.M. HQ]