With thirty-five years’ perspective, R.E.M.’s Document (released 8/31/87) remains the dual artistic/commercial pinnacle of their career. The group’s fifth album represents the culmination of their creative growth to that point as well as the
It is extremely rare for a band to achieve a creative advance simultaneous to its breakthrough to a mainstream audience. But that's exactly what R.E.M accomplished with the ever so appropriately titled Document. Accordingly, more so than perhaps any other of its anniversary reissues (except perhaps the two CDs of the Fables of the Reconstruction box), this landmark album deserves the deluxe treatment it receives.
The three remaining members of the original R.E.M. lineup have been more than just dutifully loyal to their legacy since the departure of drummer Bill Berry in 1997 following New Adventures in Hi-Fi. Their respectful attitude–as much as an implicit acknowledgment of their chemistry –compels recognition of their history in the 25th Anniversary packages such as this one devoted to Life’s Rich Pageant.