Ian O'Doherty: Essential sounds ...
The news that R.E.M. were splitting up came as something of a shock to music lovers.
Okay, their output hasn't been quite as spectacular of late, but they've been going for 30 years. And when you consider that they are still capable of producing a masterpiece like 'Leaving New York' from 2004's Around The Sun, then you have to remember that this is a band possessed by genius.
In fact, given their longevity and the almost countless number of truly classic songs they have written, you could easily make the argument that R.E.M. are the greatest band in the world.