Not since Green  more than five years earlier had REM come out so unself-consciously swingin’ as on 1994’s Monster . “We were touring for the first time in five years. We wanted something arena- and festival-ready”, says R.E.M. lead singer and lyricist Michael Stipe in Newsweek  about the overall sound of the album Monster.  Of note is the fact that the Fall 1994 release turned out to be their last with drummer Bill Berry, who suffered a life-threatening aneurysm in Germany while on the  subsequent Monster  tour and was advised by doctors to retire. Stipe, Peter Buck, and Mike Mills all join me here In the Studio.