“A half-century ago we lost Camus and gained Stipe. The lord takes and the lord gives.”
- Patti Smith

Comments (24)
  1. hihihinonono  |   Posted on Jan 4th, 2010 0

    Whoever posted this is a moron. Patti Smith is also a moron. To even compare Camus and Stipe is like comparing a retarded sloth to benji the dog; like comparing a Popsicle to a porterhouse; like comparing a shoe lace to a suit; like comparing Stereogum to William Gaddis. Camus is one of the great thinkers of Western civilization, ever. Stipe is the guy that made “Happy People.” Stereogum, I know it’s only the first week into the year, but I don’t think I can come to this site anymore if spouting such blasphemous (yeah that’s right BLASPHEMOUS) crap is your goal. You’ll most likely remove my post.

    • steve  |   Posted on Jan 5th, 2010 0

      hihihinonono, i just want to say that you remind of the type of people i tried really really hard to avoid while i was in college. like, when ever there was a party, and you were there, me and my friends would just CRINGE, “oh man, i hope that hihihinonono doesn’t come over here and try to talk to us, he is just going to go on and on about whatever fucking book he is reading…”

      R.E.M= all the good in the world.

    • For fuck’s sake dude. I love Camus’ work (I gladly credit existential literature, particularly that of Camus and Sartre, with having a greater effect on my life than any other works of art I’ve ever encountered) but get over yourself. The fact that some people happen to think Michael Stipe made some pretty awesome albums in his time is such an egregious offense to your delicate sensibilities that you can no longer bear to visit Stereogum!? Really? (Hint: you don’t have to answer. No one actually cares.)

    • Blasphemous in capitals.

      This guy is pissed!

  2. goodbyeyes  |   Posted on Jan 4th, 2010 0

    I hope your post(s) remain. You are definitely a moron.

  3. rob  |   Posted on Jan 4th, 2010 0

    camus? total poseur.

  4. Rob S.  |   Posted on Jan 4th, 2010 0

    I have learned a lot from this post. I never thought Albert Camus and Nike sports shoes had so much in common. Thank you, hacked stereogum account spambot.

  5. HAH! Look at how seriously the Camus groupie takes an independent music website post. What an existential dilemma. Excuse me while I brush up on Philosophy 101 to gain further insight into the irony of this situation.

  6. am i like the only one here who doesnt get any of these references?

  7. Bender Bending Rodriguez  |   Posted on Jan 5th, 2010 0

    Camus was better before he shaved his head.

  8. Maybe now he should start using some age-defying blue paint for his face

  9. jake  |   Posted on Jan 5th, 2010 0

    the pendulum swings both ways… write an exaggerated post, get an exaggerated rant

  10. Michael Stipe is awesome
    Albert Camus is awesome
    Patti Smith likes them both.
    Whats the problem?

  11. Scott  |   Posted on Jan 5th, 2010 0

    Camus was a bit redundant of Animal Collective.

  12. james  |   Posted on Jan 5th, 2010 0

    Twat Waffle is 50!!

  13. spanky  |   Posted on Jan 5th, 2010 0


  14. Marc  |   Posted on Jan 6th, 2010 0

    I agree with Patti Smith. Of course it might be a slight exaggeration, but I think Stipe is one of the most underrated figures in music for the last 20 years or so. Just look at the amount of hysteria surrounding Michael Jackson, and whether the same would happen if Stipe were to die. I don’t think REM’s last few albums have been amazing, but if you actually look through their back catalogue they have at least 10 or 12 brilliant albums, and have experimented with a variety of genres and sounds, from the orchestral instruments used in Automatic for the People, to the dark, grungey rock of Monster to the pulsing, unusual sound of the electronic Up.

    I also think it’s grossly unfair to cite Shiny Happy People as a method of discounting their genius. Firstly, the band had clearly intended it as a satire of brainlessly optimistic pop music with meaningless lyrics and the Disney mentality of trying to cover up any real pain or emotional turmoil with a smile. Paper over the cracks in your life, as long as you pretend to be happy and sing a joyful tune, you’ll feel better. You too can live your dreams, reaching the rich, white, beautiful ideal constantly reinforced by our culture. The problem is that the song was almost too successful at hitting its target, and instead was warmly embraced by the mainstream, completely missing the intended irony. If you take a look at it from the intended perspective it’s a much better song. And the type of attitude and culture it describes still is and always will be around- take a look at Miley Cyrus for an example.

    Secondly, what about all the brilliant songs they have written? The End of the World as We Know It, The One I Love, Everybody Hurts, Pop Song 89, Losing My Religion, Drive, Man on the Moon, King of Comedy, E-Bow the Letter, Leave, Lotus, Walk Unafraid, Imitation of Life, Bad Day… and that’s just a selection of some of their more popular songs. They made consistently interesting rock albums for years. Even now I hear their influence in a lot of new bands. How many of those that get raved about will be able to look back in 20 years having made the same impact on music, have several of their songs enter the mainstream consciousness, or even be make more than two good albums?

  15. Harshil  |   Posted on Jan 7th, 2010 0

    I agree with Marc, Michael Stipe is an icon and R.E.M. are a great band, with at least 40-50 great songs in their canon.
    Never heard of this Camus guy though..Meh, i’m only 17!!! :)

  16. Jordan  |   Posted on Jan 7th, 2010 0

    Shouldn’t that dude be made at Patti Smith anyway…she’s the one who said it…

  17. Just heard Michael Stipe and Guy Piccotto on NPR discuss their relationship with Vic Chesnutt. The interview was very moving. Stipe and Piccotto were beautiful with their words. Check it out on NPR’s website NPR.org

  18. moodude  |   Posted on Jan 11th, 2010 0

    i don’t like patti smith. she strikes me as an actor playing the stereotype of an “artist”. i don’t believe her for some reason.

  19. brian  |   Posted on Jan 11th, 2010 0

    Camus was not one of the great thinkers of western civilization. He really was the intellectual equivalent of a rock star. 1) He had an enthusiastic cult-following. 2) He packaged other peoples ideas in the form of enjoyable short works of art. And 3) the kids like to allude to him to make themselves feel important. Either way, “The Stranger” is one hell of a book.

    Happy Birthday to Mr. Stipe. “Murmur” still holds up as one of my all time favorite albums.

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