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Released: Sept. 27, 1994

Rating: 3.413 (average of 20 ratings)

Genre: alternative rock

Quotable: --

Album Tracks:

  1. What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?
  2. Crush with Eyeliner
  3. King of Comedy
  4. I Don’t Sleep, I Dream
  5. Star 69
  6. Strange Currencies
  7. Tongue
  8. Bang and Blame
  9. I Took Your Name
  10. Let Me In
  11. Circus Envy
  12. You


sales in U.S. only 4 million
sales in U.K. only - estimated 900,000
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. 2 million
sales worldwide - estimated 10 million


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 1 2
peak on U.K. album chart 1 1

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • What’s the Frequency, Kenneth? (9/17/94) #14a US, #9 UK, #2 AR, #1 MR
  • Bang and Blame (11/12/94) #19 US, #15 US, #3 AR, #1 MR
  • Crush with Eyeliner (2/4/95) #23 UK, #20 AR, #33 MR
  • Star 69 (2/18/95) #74a US, #15 AR, #8 MR
  • Strange Currencies (4/15/95) #47 US, #9 UK, #8 AR, #14 MR
  • Tongue (7/29/95) #13 UK


Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more.

Monster is indeed R.E.M.’s long-promised ‘rock’ album; it just doesn’t rock in the way one might expect. Instead of R.E.M.’s trademark anthemic bashers, Monster offers a set of murky sludge, powered by the heavily distorted and delayed guitar of Peter Buck. Michael Stipe’s vocals have been pushed to the back of the mix, along with Bill Berry’s drums, which accentuates the muscular pulse of Buck’s chords. From the androgynous sleaze of Crush with Eyeliner to the subtle, Eastern-tinged menace of You, most of the album sounds dense, dirty, and grimy, which makes the punchy guitars of What’s the Frequency, Kenneth? and the warped soul of Tongue all the more distinctive” (Erlewine).

Monster doesn’t have the conceptual unity or consistently brilliant songwriting of Automatic for the People, but it does offer a wide range of sonic textures that have never been heard on an R.E.M. album before” (Erlewine).

Review Source(s):

Related DMDB Links:

previous album: Automatic for the People (1992) R.E.M.’s DMDB page next album: New Adventures in Hi-Fi (1996)

Last updated April 3, 2008.