More from R.E.M.
Singer Michael Stipe finally confesses that even he doesn't know what he's trying to say--among the lines flying by are "tryin' to tell you something we don't know" and "there's something going on that's not quite right." But R.E.M.'s roar is at its sharpest, as Peter Buck's guitars twist up surf riffs and the Bill Berry-Mike Mills rhythm section captures the force of forebears Big Star
and the Byrds
. After half a decade of college-rock heroism, R.E.M. achieved its first hit album thanks to the rambling "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" and the gentle (but subtly barbed) "The One I Love." --Steve Knopper