R.E.M. was my favorite band when I was growing up, and that means, in some way, they’ll always be my favorite band. However, it’s clear that they haven’t quite been the same since drummer Bill Berry left the band in 1997. Although I listened religiously to the albums the band released since then, none of them felt as complete as the ones they released from about 1983 through 1992. So, I’m thrilled to report that R.E.M.’s new album feels organic and complete as some of the band’s best work. It comes out on Tuesday, March 8, 2011. Get thee to a record store like it’s 1990.