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Michael Stipe, Mike Mills Squash R.E.M. Reunion Rumors on BBC

November 3, 2011

Since legendary alternative trailblazers R.E.M. called it quits in September, after 31 years of recording and touring together, the vast, abandoned fanbase of the Athens, Georgia natives have asked one question: will there ever be a reunion?

Stipe (left) and Mills (right) appeared very content with R.E.M.'s recent disbandment.

Unlike other bands of Generation X (i.e. Soundgarden, Stone Temple Pilots, Scream), who faltered on their divorces and reunited against what seemed to be impossible odds, R.E.M. banded together for decades, consistently cranking out records, world tours, reissues…all more than a fan could ask for. Now that the band has quit cold turkey, many are left in a state of disbelief.

When lead singer Michael Stipe and bassist Mike Mills appeared on the BBC’s Newsnight with Gavin Esler, all dreams that the band had an encore yet to come were discouragingly squashed.

Stipe went on to describe the band’s split as ‘bittersweet’ and expounded…”It was an opportunity for us to walk away on our own terms … There are no external forces making us do this. We have no problems. We can walk away as friends and feel like we’ve accomplished everything we wanted to accomplish.”

While time will only tell if Stipe and the boys hold true to their word, the band’s lengthy history, which once offered fans no fear of a conclusion, has now hit the brakes. Strangely enough, it seems like this once-unstoppable alternative vehicle has seen its last stop.

That said, here is my favorite R.E.M. music video from their catalog.

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