Country Feedback

"Country Feedback" is a song by R.E.M. from their 1991 album Out of Time. The title describes the music (country rock-influenced, with feedback and pedal steel guitar), rather than describing the song's lyrical content, a series of chaotic, disconnected and keening observations describing the state of mind of a protagonist contemplating the breakdown of a relationship.

"Country Feedback"
Song by R.E.M.
from the album Out of Time
Released11 March 1991 (UK)
12 March 1991 (U.S.)
GenreCountry rock[1]
LabelWarner Bros.

Michael Stipe has claimed that he did not even write the whole lyric down, that he "just had a piece of paper with a few words. I sang it and I walked out." The following day, the hastily improvised take was deemed good enough and it was not re-recorded.[2] Peter Buck has gone even further to say that "it's exactly what was on his mind that day. It was real." Stipe has said at one concert that it is his favorite R.E.M. song.[3]

The song is featured on the Perfect Square DVD from 2003, and opens with lyrics from "Chorus and the Ring" followed by Stipe's own additions of "instinct, gut, feeling, feelings". This performance was also added to the two-disc special edition version of the band's 2003 greatest hits CD, In Time, although the original 1990 recording was left off the main disc. The studio recording also appears on the 2011 career-spanning compilation Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage 1982-2011.

In addition, live versions have appeared on a fan club single and the singles for "Bang and Blame" and "At My Most Beautiful". R.E.M have performed the song as part of the Bridge School benefit concerts series with Neil Young providing additional guitar.



Additional musician


  1. Corey Deiterman (February 17, 2014). "Five great rock/country crossovers". Houston Press.
  2. Black, Johnny (2004). Reveal: The Story of R.E.M.. Backbeat Books. ISBN 0-87930-776-5.
  3. Country Feedback (live) from In Time special edition bonus disc