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What Is Music?: A Music Podcast About R.E.M.
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What Is Music?: A Music Podcast About R.E.M.

Author: Adam Scott Glasspool, Steve Murphy, Lucas Way

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A podcast about discographies. A different artist every season. Currently in Season 6! Join Adam, Steve, and Lucas, as they go album by album, track by track, to find out if context can change your experience of music, how people become obsessed with artists, and to ultimately answer the question 'what is music?' Expect in-depth analysis, tedious tangents, controversial music opinions, and an exhaustive attitude to context. Also expect to find out more about the artists (and the hosts) than anyone could ever want to know! Previous seasons have covered Manic Street Preachers, Muse, Billie Eilish, and Radiohead!

231 Episodes
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Out of Time (Pt. 2)

Out of Time (Pt. 2)

2024-06-1701:36:54

The Big Mates discuss illicit apples, ribs, Pearl Jam, and Out of Time by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by starting their analysis of the band's seventh studio album, released in 1991. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to not caring for art or cr...
Out of Time (Pt. 1)

Out of Time (Pt. 1)

2024-06-1001:20:52

The Big Mates discuss violins, harpsichords, flugelhorns, and Out of Time by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by starting their analysis of the band's seventh studio album, released in 1991. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to not caring for art or...
Adam sits down with author John Hunter to discuss his book, Maps and Legends: The Story of R.E.M..Adam and John chat about all things R.E.M., and explore why he wrote the book, what the book encompasses, and the challenges in tackling such a wide-reaching story. They also touch on the differences in fandom today, online music discourse, and John’s Top 10 R.E.M. songs!Our next episode is out on Monday June 10th and will begin our deep-dive into Out of Time, the seventh album by R.E.M..Maps and...
Tourfilm Commentary

Tourfilm Commentary

2024-05-2601:31:52

The Big Mates provide incendiary and probably life-changing audio commentary for Tourfilm, the first live video release by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas discuss the film as originally presented on VHS/Laserdisc compilation and also dig into how it was made, how R.E.M. have progressed as a live band, and explore the whole 1989 Green World Tour.Dig out those official DVDs to watch along...Or don't - the episode works fine either way!Our next episode comes out Monday June 3rd!Join the conversatio...
Adam and Steve discuss the recent reissue of Lifeblood by Manic Street Preachers, a comprehensive set, celebrating the 20th anniversary of the album.They are joined by music producer Greg Haver, who produced the original album and here looks back at the last 20 years of Lifeblood, how people's reaction to it has changed, and how he viewed that initial reaction to the record.He also discusses how the album affected his career, changed his relationship with the band, and how he feels about the ...
Green (Pt. 2)

Green (Pt. 2)

2024-05-2001:39:57

The Big Mates discuss bass strings, 8 Mile, Amanda Lynne, and Green by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by concluding their analysis of the band's sixth studio album, released in 1988. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to not caring for art or criti...
BONG. THIS IS AN EMERGENCY NEWS BROADCAST. The Big Mates discuss the newly released album HIT ME HARD AND SOFT by Billie Eilish. They give their first impressions and pick some standout tracks.Join the conversation on:Twitter: https://twitter.com/whatismusicpodInstagram: https://www.instagram.com/whatismusicpodE-mail: whatismusicpod@gmail.comGet access to more shows, exclusive bonus content, ad-free episodes of this show, and more music discussion by subscribing to our Patreon!Head to p...
Green (Pt. 1)

Green (Pt. 1)

2024-05-1301:49:34

The Big Mates discuss naughty fishermen, floppy top half, Requiem for a Tuesday, and Green by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by starting their analysis of the band's sixth studio album, released in 1988. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to not ca...
The Big Mates discuss olive oil, Christmas, strings, and two side projects from members of Radiohead.Adam, Steve, and Lucas return to the subject of their fourth season in order to catch up the extra-curricular activities of members of Radiohead. First up is the string-laden and atmospheric third album from Philip Selway, Strange Dance. Then they explore Jarak Qaribak, the collaboration between Jonny Greenwood and Dudu Tassa. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context s...
R.E.M. 1980 - 1987

R.E.M. 1980 - 1987

2024-04-2902:43:06

The Big Mates slow it down and take a break to discuss ratings, rankings, creasy head holes, and the career of R.E.M. from 1980 - 1987.Adam, Steve, and Lucas talk about their feelings so far on the band, having covered the five records that encompass "the I.R.S. years." They place each album previously covered into the context of this era, they return to each album with more experienced ears, and they talk about how they feel about them now. They chat context, albums, preconceptions, ex...
R.E.M. Succumbs Commentary

R.E.M. Succumbs Commentary

2024-04-2201:09:51

The Big Mates provide mesmerising and entirely necessary audio commentary for Succumbs, the first video release by R.E.M. Adam, Steve, and Lucas discuss the VHS/Laserdisc compilation featuring music videos and films from 1983 through to 1986.Head to YouTube to watch along:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzWrTWsV5vI&tOr don't - the episode works fine either way!Our next episode comes out Monday April 29th and will see us reflect on R.E.M.'s career so far!Join the conversation on:Twitter: h...
Document (Pt. 2)

Document (Pt. 2)

2024-04-1501:41:45

The Big Mates discuss Christmas tree etiquette, goose related nightmares, Flea from Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and Document by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by finishing up their track-by-track analysis of the band's fifth studio album, released in 1987. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music...
Document (Pt. 1)

Document (Pt. 1)

2024-04-0801:51:01

The Big Mates discuss file naming conventions, Role Models, trickle-down economics, and Document by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by starting their analysis of the band's fifth studio album, released in 1987. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to ...
The Smile Live in Brighton

The Smile Live in Brighton

2024-04-0101:18:13

The Big Mates discuss running, arranging the arrangements of a meeting, paste, and go to see The Smile live at the Brighton Centre.Adam, Steve, and Lucas converge in Brighton in order to experience a live show by Radiohead sidproject, The Smile. They discuss their expectations, live business, and both their initial and considered reactions to the performance. What do they play? What are the vibes? Will Lucas even make it? Find out on this episode of What Is Music?Our next episode is out next ...
Dead Letter Office

Dead Letter Office

2024-03-2501:59:19

The Big Mates discuss liner notes, The Velvet Underground, being nice, and Dead Letter Office by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by exploring the collection of b-sides they released in 1987. They talk about where each track came from, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to not caring for art or ...
The Big Mates provide exciting and tangential audio commentary for a selection of R.E.M. clips ranging from 1982 to 1986.Confronted with very little good footage of the Pageantry tour, Adam, Steve, and Lucas discuss a range of clips, from news reports, live performances, interviews, and promos from across the band's career so far! There's also some grainy footage of their 1986 tour!Head to YouTube to watch along:https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLIhQdLMeupWmY_bUf_UaSqGjRXo_hbCZh&si...
Lifes Rich Pageant (Pt. 3)

Lifes Rich Pageant (Pt. 3)

2024-03-1101:35:02

The Big Mates discuss Godzilla, a car crash, The Lion King, and Lifes Rich Pageant by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by finishing up their track-by-track analysis of the band's fourth studio album, released in 1986. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and musi...
Lifes Rich Pageant (Pt. 2)

Lifes Rich Pageant (Pt. 2)

2024-03-0401:26:05

The Big Mates discuss bedtime routines, contact lenses, gravity, and Lifes Rich Pageant by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by starting their track-by-track analysis of the band's fourth studio album, released in 1986. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and mus...
Lifes Rich Pageant (Pt. 1)

Lifes Rich Pageant (Pt. 1)

2024-02-2601:40:00

The Big Mates discuss BIG NEWS, Band of Brothers, animals, and Lifes Rich Pageant by R.E.M.Adam, Steve, and Lucas continue their deep dive into the career and discography of R.E.M. by starting their analysis of the band's fourth studio album, released in 1986. They talk about the writing and recording process, the context surrounding the songs, and offer up analysis, opinions, and thoughts from three differing perspectives on music, from being deeply into analysis and music, to not caring for...
The Big Mates provide lively and intellectual audio commentary for R.E.M. Live on Rockpalast in 1985.Adam, Steve, and Lucas discuss the live performance (and a whole host of other, completely unrelated things) as broadcast on German TV. They also dig into their thoughts surrounding R.E.M. this far into the season. A must!Head to YouTube to watch along:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11GYpY1KEcIOr don't - the episode works fine either way!Our next episode comes out Monday February 26th a...
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Comments (2)

Seth Burke

The Big Mates kick @$$

Aug 8th
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Becky Evans

This is great. I laughed so much my mascara ran and I now have Richey-style panda eyes. I've been a fan of the Manics since GT but don't have all the albums so this is a useful guide. Looking forward to the next episode.

Jan 29th
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