Eponymous (album)

Eponymous is the first greatest hits and the second compilation album by American alternative rock band R.E.M., released in 1988. It was their last authorized [5] release on I.R.S. Records, to whom they had been contracted since 1982, having just signed with Warner Bros. Records.

Greatest hits album by
ReleasedOctober 17, 1988 (1988-10-17)
GenreAlternative rock
ProducerJoe Boyd, Mitch Easter, Don Dixon, Don Gehman, and Scott Litt
R.E.M. chronology
R.E.M. compilations chronology
Dead Letter Office
The Best of R.E.M.
Professional ratings
Review scores
Robert ChristgauA−[2]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[4]

Eponymous is notable for its inclusion of several rare or alternative versions of known tracks, most notably the soundtrack contribution "Romance", which had not previously appeared on an R.E.M. record. Spanning from the initial single release of "Radio Free Europe" to the previous year's breakthrough hit album Document, Eponymous provides a fair overview of R.E.M.'s early work.

The album features the alternate title "File Under Grain", a reference to the cover photograph. A previous album, Document, had "File Under Fire" inscribed on it, and Reckoning featured the words "File Under Water". On the reverse of the LP cover was a photograph of singer Michael Stipe with the words "They Airbrushed My Face" above his head. The photo is the senior portrait taken of Stipe while at Collinsville High School in Collinsville, Illinois. It appears in the Class of 1978 high school year book.

Released in October 1988, just a month before R.E.M.'s Warner Bros. debut Green appeared, Eponymous reached #44 in the US[6] and #69 in the UK.[7]

Track listing

All songs written by Bill Berry, Peter Buck, Mike Mills and Michael Stipe:

Side one – "Early"

  1. "Radio Free Europe" (original Hib-Tone single) (1981) – 3:47
  2. "Gardening at Night" (different vocal mix)1 – 3:30
  3. "Talk About the Passion" (from Murmur, 1983) – 3:20
  4. "So. Central Rain" (from Reckoning, 1984) – 3:15
  5. "(Don't Go Back To) Rockville" (from Reckoning, 1984) – 4:32
  6. "Cant Get There from Here" (from Fables of the Reconstruction, 1985) – 3:39

Side two – "Late"

  1. "Driver 8" (from Fables of the Reconstruction, 1985) – 3:23
  2. "Romance" (from soundtrack album to the 1987 film Made in Heaven) – 3:25
  3. "Fall on Me" (from Lifes Rich Pageant, 1986) – 2:50
  4. "The One I Love" (from Document, 1987) – 3:16
  5. "Finest Worksong" (mutual drum horn mix) (from "Finest Worksong" single) – 3:50
  6. "It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" (from Document, 1987) – 4:05


Chart positions

Year Chart Position
1988 U.S. Billboard 200 44[6]
1988 UK Albums Chart 69[7]


  1. "Eponymous". Allmusic. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
  2. "Cg: R.E.M". Robert Christgau. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
  3. Gill, Andy (December 1988). "Re-releases: R.E.M. Eponymous". Q. p. 157.
  4. "R.E.M.: Album Guide". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2012-08-26.
  5. Polk, Leilani (February 2014). "Spin Cities". Creative Loafing pp.41.
  6. "Eponymous - R.E.M. Awares". Allmusic. AllMusic, a division of All Media Network, LLC. Retrieved 18 June 2014.
  7. "R.E.M. Artist Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Official Charts Company. Archived from the original on 13 March 2013. Retrieved 18 June 2014.