What's Missing From R.E.M.'s Final Greatest Hits Tracklist?

Before you see this as a total cash grab, mere days after R.E.M. called it quits, here’s some context for the band’s recently announced new Greatest Hits collection (via Rolling Stone):

R.E.M. actually made their decision a few months ago, before they met in Athens, Georgia, this summer to record three new songs for a two-CD greatest-hits package, R.E.M., Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage 1982- 2011, out November 15th. The band delayed the announcement because “a lot of people are affected by this decision in a serious way,” Mills says, referring to R.E.M.’s staff and crew. “We wanted everything set up the way it should be.”

So how’d they do? A few omissions of note: “Radio Song,” “Near Wild Heaven,” “Find The River,” “Drive,” “E-Bow The Letter,” “Bittersweet Me,” “All The Way To Reno.” Also, only one song from Monster. Guess which one?

Disc 1:
01 “Gardening at Night”
02 “Radio Free Europe”
03 “Talk About the Passion”
04 “Sitting Still”
05 “So. Central Rain”
06 “(Don’t Go Back to) Rockville”
07 “Driver 8″
08 “Life and How to Live It”
09 “Begin the Begin”
10 “Fall on Me”
11 “Finest Worksong”
12 “It’s the End of the World as We Know it (and I Feel Fine)”
13 “The One I Love”
14 “Stand”
15 “Pop Song 89″
16 “Get Up”
17 “Orange Crush”
18 “Losing My Religion”
19 “Country Feedback”
20 “Shiny Happy People”

Disc 2:
01 “The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite”
02 “Everybody Hurts”
03 “Man on the Moon”
04 “Nightswimming”
05 “Whats the Frequency, Kenneth?”
06 “New Test Leper”
07 “Electrolite”
08 “At My Most Beautiful”
09 “The Great Beyond”
10 “Imitation of Life”
11 “Bad Day”
12 “Leaving New York”
13 “Living Well Is the Best Revenge”
14 “Supernatural Superserious”
15 “Überlin”
16 “Oh My Heart”
17 “Alligator_Aviator_Autopilot_Antimatter”
18 “A Month of Saturdays”
19 “We All Go Back to Where We Belong”
20 “Hallelujah”

Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage: 1982-2011 is out 11/15 on Warner Brothers.

Comments (53)
  1. “Harborcoat” and “World Leader Pretend”.

  2. just two tracks from Reckoning? That’s my favorite! Where’s “Harborcoat” or “7 Chinese Bros?”

    i mean, there’s 4 from Collapse Into Now. COME ON

  3. Really, THREE songs from the new album? I like Collapse Into Now, but come on. These are not, nor ever will be, greatest hits by any stretch of the term. Especially when, as you point out, an album like Monster only gets on track.

  4. Not one of my favorites, but “Daysleeper” and I think it probably could have been swapped in instead of some of the less known inclusions from their last two albums.

  5. …And Half a world away, Bittersweet me, Try not to breathe, The sweetness follows, Sad Professor, The apologist, Disappear, etc.

  6. “Wolves Lower”
    At least one of “These Days”, “I Believe” or “Swan Swan H.”
    “Can’t Get There From Here”
    One of either “Seven Chines Bros.” or “Pretty Persuasion”.
    One of either “Star 69″ or “Strange Currencies”.
    Or you could just add them all and get rid of the last 9-10 songs on the current list.

    Hopefully the version of “Finest Worksong” is the good one with the horns from Eponymous, and not the crappy one without the horns that appeared on Document.

  7. Yeah kinda bulshit… but then again, can’t really imagine removing much, and many of the obvious additions would be things already covered on previous “best of’s”. But there’s no defending THREE COLLAPSE INTO NOW SONGS?! Or Superseriousnaturallzzu or whatever

  8. Daysleeper should definitely be on there over the new stuff. Surprised at Swan Swan’s absence, Pretty Persuasion, Strange Currencies…and that’s just from tracks already mentioned.

    Leaves room for a ‘Definitive’ collection in another 10 years…

  9. They should’ve just packaged Murmer and Automatic for the People together

  10. This should have been 3 CD set.

  11. I don’t think I would call anything on Document “crappy”.

  12. “Can’t Get There From Here”
    “Superman” (it’s a cover, but still a fave)

  13. Of course we all have our favorite R.E.M. songs we think should be on a best of. The great thing is in the age of iTunes, just add the missing songs to this best of -take off the ones you don’t like and it’s your own personal R.E.M. best of.

  14. Really glad to see “Country Feedback” on there. Know it’s one of Mr. Stipe’s personal favorite songs, but I didn’t expect it to make the cut. But yeah, “Harborcoat” definitely belongs in there.

  15. I’m honestly seriously annoyed that “Crush With Eyeliner” isn’t on there.

  16. drive is my all time favorite REM track. that’s what’s missing.

    • Yeah, that “Sidewinder” is on here but not “Drive” seems like the biggest error, hits-wise anyway. That and no “E-Bow.”

  17. “E-Bow The Letter” makes me swoon.

  18. Missing a lot of the early greats, like others have mentioned.
    I also can’t stand some of the songs that were included, like Stand, Everybody Hurts and The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite. These are songs that give me migraines, and some of the weakest they’ve produced. Goes to show they’d be among the most popular as well, but c’mon, even if you like em, you’ve heard they 9349875476347634896 times on the radio already.

  19. Cuyahoga, Near Wild Heaven, Pilgrimage, You Are The Everything, World Leader Pretend, Half A World Away, blah blah. Six songs from last three albums = fail.

  20. 9-9 is my favorite song.

  21. I’m surprised to see Shiny Happy People making the cut. While I actually do like it more than most fans, I know Michael Stipe hasn’t hid his hatred for it in past years, I guess he’s finally made his peace with it.
    I agree with most of the omissions already mentioned above. I think they should have included All the Right Friends, a song from the Vanilla Sky soundtrack which has always been one of my favorites.

  22. ‘E-Bow the Letter’ ! ! it’s such a beautiful song..

    also, ‘Drive’ .. but i suppose they were going for more upbeat.. arg

  23. “Bang and Blame,” “Let Me In,” and “Crush with Eyeliner” should all be on there from Monster. “Electron Blue” would have been a much better selection from Around the Sun, and I would have put “Drive” and E-Bow on there for sure. “Perfect Circle” would also be nice to have included.

    I get that they are trying to present a cohesive legacy, but there are just too many songs from the recent albums. At least put “Discoverer” on there instead of “Alligator…” Monster is still one of my favorite albums.

  24. I’ve always had a soft spot for Exhuming McCarthy. That bass line during the “sign of the times” part. Oh baby.

  25. Anyone heard “Losing My Religion”? Where’d they dig that one up?

  26. No “Superman”? Why does that one always get left off?

  27. No “World Leader Pretend”?
    Also would any of you be so kind enough to check out a band I write lyrics for…people say we sound like r.e.m-maybe its our singers accent and my odd lyrics….anyways if you get chance please do
    Sorry to bother y’all.

  28. E-Bow The Letter, Drive, Daysleeper and All The Way To Reno

  29. “Perfect Circle” should be on there, amazing song.

  30. King of Birds needs to be on here

  31. bang and blame is missing

  32. “Feeling Gravity’s Pull” and “Boxcars”

  33. Already started revisiting the old albums in chronological order. Oh how their songs have sondtracked a big part of my life.

    • Really, only two from Reckoning? From the early LPs, they left off:

      Wolves, Lower
      Can’t Get There
      Green Grow The Rushes
      These Days
      Swan Swan H

      Hell, you could make a “Best Of…” out of what was LEFT OFF of the first 7 records and it would totally kick ass. Early REM was brilliant

  34. DRIVE motherfucker DRIVE

  35. The rap in Radio Song sounds dated and almost embarrassing.

  36. Time After Time is my least favorite song!

  37. Admittedly some strange omissions, but I’m really glad Country Feedback made it on.

  38. Harborcoat, Letter Never Sent, and Find the River

  39. “Drive” and “Laughing”, such a beautiful song

  40. Strange Currencies beats Kenneth a hundred times over

  41. Uh…just about every track on Monster. Such an awesome album.

  42. “Pretty Persuasion” is the song that got me into R.E.M.

  43. It’s a Free World Baby – which was on the Conehead’s soundtrack
    but should have been on Automatic for the People

  44. World Leader Pretend

  45. I can’t believe no one has mentioned ” LEAVE ” which is by far my favorite R.E.M. song , It gives goosebumps sometimes ;That song never fails to make scream , That’s weird

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