R.E.M. have decided to say farewell to their 31-year-old namesake and move on to other ventures, according to a statement on their official website. The band released their 15th album, Collapse into Now, earlier this year, and though it may not have thrilled as many listeners as Murmur did back in 1983, their influence on “alternative rock” of all stripes has been huge, and they’ll be missed by many.
Front man Michael Stipe had this to say about the split:
A wise man once said—‘the skill in attending a party is knowing when it’s time to leave. We built something extraordinary together. We did this thing. And now we’re going to walk away from it.
I hope our fans realize this wasn’t an easy decision; but all things must end, and we wanted to do it right, to do it our way.
We have to thank all the people who helped us be R.E.M. for these 31 years; our deepest gratitude to those who allowed us to do this. It’s been amazing.
Statements from Mike Mills and Peter Buck have also been posted on the site.
• R.E.M.: http://remhq.com