November 16, 2012

R.E.M. broke up last year, but given how incredibly prolific they were over three decades as a band, it stood to reason that we’d see a slow trickle of unreleased material come to light. That said, this is a bit of a surprise: A video was released for “Blue,” from the last-ever album Collapse Into Now, starring a few famous faces to help accentuate the point that blurry found footage of Los Angeles can’t do on its own. Specifically, Lindsay Lohan and Terry Richardson show up in the middle of the video, juxtaposed against scenes of dreary art openings and wide shots of the city, lending everything a wonderfully Californian vibe (or so I imagine; I’ve never actually been out West). At this point in her career, Lohan is best utilized as a subtextual object; I’m not sure what her inclusion here means, but it feels like it has to mean something, right? Or maybe it’s just as simple as Lindsay Lohan getting filmed by Terry Richardson for the billionth time. You’d have to ask director James Franco, who probably takes pride in his inscrutability. The song, though, is as beautiful as you might or might nor remember it, as the band made sure to go out on a high note. R.E.M. forever.

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