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R.E.M. — So. Central Rain
Album: Reckoning
Avg rating:
7.7

Your rating:
Total ratings: 2786









Released: 1984
Length: 3:09
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Did you never call? I waited for your call
These rivers of suggestion are driving me away
The trees will bend, the cities wash away
The city on the river there is a girl without a dream
I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry

Eastern to Mountain, third party call, the lines are down
The wise man built his words upon the rocks
But I'm not bound to follow suit
The trees will bend, the conversation's dimmed
Go build yourself another home, this choice isn't mine
I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry

Did you never call? I waited for your call
These rivers of suggestion are driving me away
The ocean sang, the conversation's dimmed
Go build yourself another dream, this choice isn't mine
I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry
Comments (323)add comment
 Radio_Melodia wrote:

Too much R.E.M. for me on this station. 
 


Me too
OMG.

This. Brings back so many memories.

At their best, before they became mega famous, R.E.M produced beautiful music.
Yes, arguably, Automatic For The People was a crackingly good album, but it doesn't have this rawness of sound, this simplistic beauty. 

Every element just pulls together as one, like a band that really knows each other, a band doing the music for the love and importance of the art form. 

Yes, it's serious stuff - most of the output of R.E.M at this time was very serious.
But hell, it's good.
GREAT!!
 klaasstap wrote:

Just like The War On Drugs this band will be forgotten soon. 



Considering it's been about 40 years, how do you define soon?
Saw REM perform in the tiny but gorgeous Graham Chapel on the campus of Washington University in St. Louis in the late '80s. They performed this song, but about three times slower. It was absolutely transcendent!
 klaasstap wrote:

Just like The War On Drugs this band will be forgotten soon. 


I see in your song ratings that you have given an 8 rating to "What's the Frequency Kenneth?" by REM  

 klaasstap wrote:

Just like The War On Drugs this band will be forgotten soon. 


In, what, another 37 years?
Just like The War On Drugs this band will be forgotten soon. 
I listened to REM's first two albums incessantly. However, I never knew the lyrics and some ways, didn't care what the songs were about. Now, with RP's lyrics, I can see that I'm still confused...

Reckoning and Murmur and a few other early albums were great. What happened to them at the end? I think I'm in for a dip into those early albums to see if they hold up after all these years.
 SmackDaddy wrote:
Funny thing is that Stipe says he had no idea how to write a song or lyrics on these first two (or three) albums. But what's really funny is that he always managed to covey feelings, emotions, and a sense of what it was about even while being obtuse or even stringing together gibberish and you couldn't quite put into words what any of the songs were about. 
While some  REM's lyrics and their meanings may be obscure  .

Certainly South Side Rain is not so hard to decipher!

Pretty straight forward in what it is about!


"Sorry" but critics that say REM's lyrics are mostly babble are down below it !

"Rivers of suggestion are driving me away"

This  entire song lyric is sheer poetry.
Moreover, the way the music paints the story is mesmerizing !

I cherish that day long ago when Stipe & Co came into my audiophile palate !

Over structured and a way to basic rhythm to appeal to my ears. They clash with my lobes!
This is the first song I ever heard by them - on WLIR when I was in high school (yes, I'm old). It will always hold a special place in my heart because it introduced me to what would become my favorite band of all time. 
I met them at a Halloween party in 1984 ish. In Nashville. In my neighborhood. I'm showing my age. Beautiful wonderful people, R.E.M.  I was dressed in a cubist design, they recognized that. Get this message to them. I love them. :)
Funny thing is that Stipe says he had no idea how to write a song or lyrics on these first two (or three) albums. But what's really funny is that he always managed to covey feelings, emotions, and a sense of what it was about even while being obtuse or even stringing together gibberish and you couldn't quite put into words what any of the songs were about. 
 dancnbarefoot wrote:
The memories swell when I listen to this. Coming back from class in college and putting this album, yes album, on and dancing.Best of times.
 
Too right, friend.  Those were the best of times.  I miss my college friends so much sometimes...
 rdo wrote:


If you really took that vote, then five crappy REM songs would win, like stuff off of Monster.   Here are my votes:  Begin the Begin, Perfect Circle, Radio Free Europe, Time After Time, I am Superman.  I know the last one is a cover, and I shudder to think I am saying a cover should be in the top five songs of perhaps the greatest American band, but I still have never heard the Clique original and that's the story I am sticking to.
 

I would add Driver 8 and Fireplace
 missionaire wrote:
My favourite part is right at the end when someone else in the band starts beating Michael Stipe over the head with a piano.
 Yeah, agree - my favourite part is the (very) end too! One of THE most overrated bands on earth.

 moodfood wrote:
 don't be sorry, be happy..{#Cheesygrin}
 Yep!  They punched my "be happy" button just now.  Yay!

I'm sorry. Love REM But this is a PSD for me.
This song and album along with Murmur are some of the best of their time and worth a listen, they could and should belong in heaps of millennials record collections.
Great song for the moment. I can keep dancing round my room. Matches my morning energy. Thank you
Driver 8 and Fireplace have to be up there for best REM tracks...
 dancnbarefoot wrote:
The memories swell when I listen to this. Coming back from class in college and putting this album, yes album, on and dancing.Best of times.
 
You and me both!
The memories swell when I listen to this. Coming back from class in college and putting this album, yes album, on and dancing.Best of times.
My favourite part is right at the end when someone else in the band starts beating Michael Stipe over the head with a piano.
Driving to the old Buick, long path to Dallas with my full trailer with this cassette early in 1985.  Great days.
Still a nice "alt-folk" tune...all these years later
A solid 2.  If there was ever a whiney vocalist, it's Stipe.  He oughta change the title of this to "I'm Whiney."  

{#Moon}
8—>9 today.  Such a good song.
 wrangler wrote:

no such thing!  {#Cowboy}

 
Ummm. no
Greetings from So. Central Ave {#Cowboy}
 Radio_Melodia wrote:
Too much R.E.M. for me on this station. 
 

 
no such thing!  {#Cowboy}
Too much R.E.M. for me on this station. 
 
 Shaken_Bake wrote:
I've never loved a song so much which lyrics were absolutely undecipherable!  (I'm sorry.)

 
Well not absolutely undecipherable - I also belt out the SORRY part with Mr. Stipe. 
Sitting in a bar in Berkeley in the latter 80s, waiting for the Replacements to take the stage (or was it The Nails?) and this comes on overhead. The crowd starts bobbing and hopping and nodding in hipster acknowledgment. The guy next to me, face gleeful, leans over and says "I have no idea what's up - but he's certainly sorry!"

What a great time this was. 
I've never loved a song so much which lyrics were absolutely undecipherable!  (I'm sorry.)
twoplain2sea wrote:


             Sorry, here you talking to Central train station.
   So hear,  my name is Rasmus, and my middle name is Robinson.
          And,  you can kiss goodbye to your luggage claim.

 
 Snortling so here now. And I was just settling in good to my typically pious R.E.M. reverie. 


             Sorry, here you talking to Central train station.
   So hear,  my name is Rasmus, and my middle name is Robinson.
          And,  you can kiss goodbye to your luggage claim.
REM jars with me - thoroughly dislike their music - just don't get them. Every track sounds samey
 
 stalfnzo wrote:
I used to LOVE REM. Then I heard them in concert. By far my least enjoyable concert. He seemed bored, at best. Uninspired. Just going through the motions. No EMOTION. Too bad.

  Too bad you didn't catch them earlier.  Mr. Stipe was frenetic!


 don't be sorry, be happy..{#Cheesygrin}
 wrangler wrote:
We just moved into out new house on So. Central Ave, and it's raining today  {#Cowboy}

 
I'm sorry...
I used to LOVE REM. Then I heard them in concert. By far my least enjoyable concert. He seemed bored, at best. Uninspired. Just going through the motions. No EMOTION. Too bad.
We just moved into out new house on So. Central Ave, and it's raining today  {#Cowboy}
ahh to be young again.. uhh no thanks  {#Smile}
God I loved them back then and this whole album.  Never get tired of it!
 rdo wrote:


If you really took that vote, then five crappy REM songs would win, like stuff off of Monster.   Here are my votes:  Begin the Begin, Perfect Circle, Radio Free Europe, Time After Time, I am Superman.  I know the last one is a cover, and I shudder to think I am saying a cover should be in the top five songs of perhaps the greatest American band, but I still have never heard the Clique original and that's the story I am sticking to.

 

Great choices!  Especially Begin the Begin one of my personal favs also.{#Cheers}
 treatment_bound wrote:


BWAAAA.... That's a classic.  Might be as good as Prince Rogers Neslon's --->



 


perfect 10.  {#Cowboy}
wow... when they were great, they were really great.
 Sloggydog wrote:

Agreed but even when they were poor I think the Album cover could have used a spruce up.  I remember my Dad thought this was homemade when I bought the cassette.  

Oh also to join the debate on best ever REM songs I offer - Country Feedback, World Leader Pretend and King Of Birds.
 


Yeah, I know what you mean...  the album cover looks very intestinal...


but the album cover is not important—  what matters most is the music, and every song on the album be soooo good...

we be dancing... love this song...
 

 le_colonel wrote:
Yeah, if this isn't a ten, I don't know what is...

 
Agreed! Crank it UP!
Yeah, if this isn't a ten, I don't know what is...
 Lazarus wrote:

fantastic song from a GREAT album...
 
 
Agreed but even when they were poor I think the Album cover could have used a spruce up.  I remember my Dad thought this was homemade when I bought the cassette.  

Oh also to join the debate on best ever REM songs I offer - Country Feedback, World Leader Pretend and King Of Birds.

fantastic song from a GREAT album...
 


This song is soooo good it puts a spring in my step this winter day...
 
When Monster was released I thought it was quite different and very good. Now, even though I still enjoy some of the songs from it, I don't think it stacks up to their earlier work or their later Automatic For The People.
 gandalfbmg wrote:


ugh, again with the hate for Monster... It's a good album...

But still none of its songs taken individually stack up to this one, which is far and away their best song...
 
{#Sorry}  Sorry, I'll stop raggin on Monster.   I know people like it.  It's just that it...oops, I'll shut up.   {#Zip-lip} {#Taped-shut} {#Lol}
I enjoy this era REM, but always thought this song quite wimpy
 rdo wrote:


If you really took that vote, then five crappy REM songs would win, like stuff off of Monster.   Here are my votes:  Begin the Begin, Perfect Circle, Radio Free Europe, Time After Time, I am Superman.  I know the last one is a cover, and I shudder to think I am saying a cover should be in the top five songs of perhaps the greatest American band, but I still have never heard the Clique original and that's the story I am sticking to.
 

ugh, again with the hate for Monster... It's a good album...

But still none of its songs taken individually stack up to this one, which is far and away their best song...
 sirdroseph wrote:

No, I think if you were to take a concensus vote for best REM song, my guess this one would win or at least be in the top 5. It certainly gets my vote.

 

If you really took that vote, then five crappy REM songs would win, like stuff off of Monster.   Here are my votes:  Begin the Begin, Perfect Circle, Radio Free Europe, Time After Time, I am Superman.  I know the last one is a cover, and I shudder to think I am saying a cover should be in the top five songs of perhaps the greatest American band, but I still have never heard the Clique original and that's the story I am sticking to.

very nice


 sirdroseph wrote:
No, I think if you were to take a concensus vote for best REM song, my guess this one would win or at least be in the top 5. It certainly gets my vote.
 
Stand.
Love it!  {#Sunny} 10

This brings me back to when I was still in school. A friend and I just finished a bike trip down the east coast that ended in Athens GA. We met up with some friends, took some X and went to a park where the Chickasaw Mud Puppies were playing. We were awash in feelings of joy in the day and completion of our trip, and who is there dancing away with us - Stipe. At least in my mind we were all celebrating together. Just a great time of my life.
 sirdroseph wrote:

No, I think if you were to take a concensus vote for best REM song, my guess this one would win or at least be in the top 5. It certainly gets my vote.

 
This is a great song but my personal favorite REM song is "Belong".

Nice bit of 12-string action there ...
A friend introduced me to this album shortly after it was released in '84. I kind of liked it at first but after a few listens I thought it was fantastic stuff! Ended up seeing them live 5 times starting with the Fables tours at the Commodore in Vancouver - Simply awesome!

Met them (except Peter Buck) after the Monster show in '95 at the Colosseum.

All their great albums were the early ones ending with Automatic For The People.

This one's a solid 8. 
Songs that were playing when my grandparents died: 

1. So. Central Rain
2. Simple Man
3. Refugee 
The beginning strains of this song always - ALWAYS! - guarantee that I'll listen to the whole song and love it.
Always brings on a wave of wistful nostalgia ... and the urge to DANCE in a most disorganized way! {#Sunny}
Listen to this song, listen to the recent effort. This is so very good.
That guitar...
 fredriley wrote:

Shagging and typing? Talk of multi-tasking... ;)

 
I'm gonna hope romeotuma's referring to DANCING (there was a dance in the '60's called The Shag)  but even if he isn't, it's still some mighty multi-tasking. {#Roflol}
 romeotuma wrote:
We be shagging...  love it...
 
Shagging and typing? Talk of multi-tasking... ;)

 Cynaera wrote:

LOL - romeotuma, you just make me grin from ear to ear.  When I hear the first guitar notes of this song, I just get shivers and close my eyes to soak it up. It's one of those pieces that moves me on so many levels I can't even convey them in words. To me, this is one of R.E.M.'s best songs. I'm sure people will disagree, and thank goodness for that! {#Dancingbanana}
 
No, I think if you were to take a concensus vote for best REM song, my guess this one would win or at least be in the top 5. It certainly gets my vote.

 DEWBKEY wrote:
great band great show so many years ago 
I was there, too ... great memories of better days.

 Cynaera wrote:

LOL - romeotuma, you just make me grin from ear to ear.  When I hear the first guitar notes of this song, I just get shivers and close my eyes to soak it up. It's one of those pieces that moves me on so many levels I can't even convey them in words. To me, this is one of R.E.M.'s best songs. I'm sure people will disagree, and thank goodness for that! {#Dancingbanana}
 
Yes, from one of their best albums. I keep going back to side 1, it is amazing. {#Cheers}

Sorry! Sooorrrrryyy! I know you love them, but I HATE R.E.M. so SICK of them! There, I've said it. Now you can enjoy. {#Puke}{#Puke}{#Puke}{#Naughty}
Such a sorry ass song.
great band great show so many years ago

 musickat wrote:

Cynaera, you make be grin from ear to ear.... such a perceptive soul I think.

 
Hugs to you, musickat. Geez, and it STILL gives me shivers, even now. How I love RP...

My favorite REM song, period. I remember the first time I saw the video on Mtv....good memories. {#Good-vibes}
 Cynaera wrote:

LOL - romeotuma, you just make me grin from ear to ear.  When I hear the first guitar notes of this song, I just get shivers and close my eyes to soak it up. It's one of those pieces that moves me on so many levels I can't even convey them in words. To me, this is one of R.E.M.'s best songs. I'm sure people will disagree, and thank goodness for that! {#Dancingbanana}
 
Cynaera, you make be grin from ear to ear.... such a perceptive soul I think.

 Jelani wrote:
 You mean when they're acceptable, right?
 
No, I believe he meant when they were really good.  I know a lot of really good bands that might not be considered "acceptable" by some.

 romeotuma wrote:


We just turned the volume wayyyy up and started dancing here...  love it...


 
LOL - romeotuma, you just make me grin from ear to ear.  When I hear the first guitar notes of this song, I just get shivers and close my eyes to soak it up. It's one of those pieces that moves me on so many levels I can't even convey them in words. To me, this is one of R.E.M.'s best songs. I'm sure people will disagree, and thank goodness for that! {#Dancingbanana}


One of the greatest REM songs and one of the best songs out of the 80's!{#Cheers}

R.E.M. by ~JSaurer
©2008-2010 ~JSaurer

the finest american band of the 80s,
airbrush & collage, 1990

 Bosami wrote:
9>10

What was I thinking? Love it.
 

Agreed!
I'm sorry
Murmur and Reckoning: one of the greatest one-two punches in album history, IMO. 
 Bosami wrote:
9>10

What was I thinking? Love it.
  Me too! 


HEM does an exquisite, slow version of this—-
Nothing like those first few r.e.m. albums.  They were tapping the Source of true creativity because they weren't thinking about it.  Michael's voice was unfettered emotion.
See - the '80s weren't so bad.
surprisingly well-enunciated, stipe!
one of my favorite REM songs from their best era as a band.
9>10

What was I thinking? Love it.
Well, I can't say anything bad about this song. It's a good one.
 romeotuma wrote:


love this song...
 

Do you have an opinion of this song? Just wondering! {#Biggrin}

You must have the record for hearing/posting this one on RP.

Couldn't agree with you more though - fantastic song - great album.

Cheers!
 Papernapkin wrote:
Sounds like a sorry wimp song.
 
{#Roflol}{#Ass}{#Stupid}
 sirdroseph wrote:

Another example of REM when they were really good! Great song!!{#Notworthy}

  You mean when they're acceptable, right?


Another example of REM when they were really good! Great song!!{#Notworthy}


Such a brilliant, haunting REM song. One of my top ten songs ever and never fails to stir me
Did you never call? I waited for your call
These rivers of suggestion are driving me away
The ocean sang, the conversation's dimmed
Go build yourself another dream, this choice isn't mine


Nice! {#Notworthy}

Sounds like a sorry wimp song.
Twenty-five years old, already??

Friggin love this song!{#Dancingbanana}


 romeotuma wrote:
This fantastic song, from a truly great album, brings back so many memories...
 
So true. 
 rdo wrote:
I liked REM a lot more back when I didn't have any idea what they were saying or what they were singing about.  Reckoning is a good example of that. 

I still don't know exactly what they are saying in my favorite REM song "Perfect Circle" .  Something about shoulders high in the wind. 
 
Wolves lower to you, my friend.  "Murmer" also—-back when R.E.M.rocked

I liked REM a lot more back when I didn't have any idea what they were saying or what they were singing about.  Reckoning is a good example of that. 

I still don't know exactly what they are saying in my favorite REM song "Perfect Circle" .  Something about shoulders high in the wind. 
I remember driving along the 401 many years ago, and hearing CFNY play this song, and loving it.  The DJ didn't tell me the name of the song (I knew it was REM, obviously), so I spent the next while scouring record stores looking for the album with the song "Sorry" on it.  It was months before I figured it out...
there is a local, NYC artist: Sasha Zand who does a wonderful cover version of this song!
I am on a REM kick ... heavy on my commuter rotation ... still sounds great ...
 Papernapkin wrote:
You know those people with low self esteem who are always saying they're sorry for saying the wrong thing, for doing the wrong thing, for just existing. That's this song.
 
Sorry....{#Sad}

You know those people with low self esteem who are always saying they're sorry for saying the wrong thing, for doing the wrong thing, for just existing. That's this song.
 romeotuma wrote:


GREAT song...  this whole album was awesome...
 
I third that
one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite albums.  yeehaw!  {#Cowboy}