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R.E.M. — Try Not To Breathe
Album: Automatic For The People
Avg rating:
7.7

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1224









Released: 1992
Length: 3:44
Plays (last 30 days): 1
I will try not to breathe
I can hold my head still with my hands at my knees
These eyes are the eyes of the old
Shiver in the cold

I will try not to breathe
This decision is mine
I have lived a full life
And these are the eyes that I want you to remember

Oh, I need something to fly over my grave again
I need something to breathe

I will try not to burden you
I can hold these inside
I will hold my breath until all these shivers subside
Just look in my eyes

I will try not to worry you
I have seen things that you will never see
Leave it to memory me
I shudder to breathe

I want you to remember, oh ''(You will never see)''
I need something to fly ''(Something to fly)''
Over my grave again ''(You will never see)''
I need something to breathe ''(Something to breathe)''

Baby don't shiver now
Why do you shiver now? ''(I will see things you will never see)''
I need something to fly ''(Something to fly)''
Over my grave again ''(I will see things you will never see)''
I need something to breathe

Oh, I will try not to worry you
I have seen things you will never see
Leave it to memory me
Don't dare me to breathe

I want you to remember, oh ''(You will never see)''
I need something to fly ''(Something to fly)''
Over my grave again ''(You will never see)''
I need something to breathe ''(Something to breathe)''

Baby don't shiver now
Why do you shiver now? ''(I will see things you will never see)
I need something to breathe ''(Something to breathe)''
''(I have seen things you will never see)'' I want you to remember
Comments (132)add comment
Breathing + R.E.M. I get it. 
There's an excellent episode of the SONG EXPLODER podcast about the making of this song. If you're a fan (of the song and/or the band), it's definitely worth a listen. 
 chinaski wrote:
Borrowing from Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald? Anyway it's my favorite REM album.
 
It's got a completely different chord progression to that of Gordon's classic ballad, but it does have a similar "sea shanty" rhythm to it. 
Still a good album.
Borrowing from Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald? Anyway it's my favorite REM album.
 kcar wrote:
Reminds me of a sea chantey. Begar. 

 

Right?!  Another reason I love it.
In the one second silence after ELP's Still You Turn Me On and before this started I knew that this song would be next. Something like an old cassette you have played over and over. Strange things happening here. Should I consult a psychiatrist?
 kcar wrote:
Reminds me of a sea chantey. Begar. 

 
That may be because it's in 3/4 (waltz) time and played at that "sea shanty" tempo.  Michael Stipe may also have been wearing an eyepatch when they recorded this.
Reminds me of a sea chantey. Begar. 
 user4176 wrote:
REM is not bad music, but I just can't get used to this voice. Sounds like a wailing baby to me, but not in a good way :-)

 
Please describe a situation in which a wailing baby IS "in a good way".
Just pulled this CD off the rack for this week's commuting entertainment. Still great.
Ode to Weaver D's.
REM is not bad music, but I just can't get used to this voice. Sounds like a wailing baby to me, but not in a good way :-)
I've been listening to more REM lately. The BBC had a great 2-hour special on Out of Time. 
Glad to hear that Bill seems to have "kicked up" REM on the playlists recently - thumbs up!

They're wonderful.

Clearly I am objective about this.


Mike MIlls is the secret weapon of REM.
They were never the same without Bill Berry....all (most) iconic bands have great drummers. 
My favorite song from this album. 
 bb_matt wrote:
REM when they were great. Success ruined the band.

 
What about Monster, New adventures, Up, Accelerate and Collapse into now? Hm? Very very fine pieces if you ask me.
I could never really gt into REM, they are just too winey too me. Now I guess I am wining!
Incredible album of work, wonderful lyric on this.
Happy birthday Michael Stipe! And thank you for this great song and marvelous album!
 bb_matt wrote:
REM when they were great. Success ruined the band.

 
Or maybe they just got tired or the creative juices ran out?  It happens.
REM when they were great. Success ruined the band.
A tutor who tooted the flute
Tried to teach two young tooters to toot.
   Said the two to the tutor,
   "Is it harder to toot, or
To tutor two tooters to toot?"

   The Kid     : The Tutor is high on information on vestiges&claws.
   The Tutor  :  Kid is just trying to walk yet doesn't know it from flying.
 dejapete wrote:
Old age sucks...assuming that's what this song is about.

Haven't heard this song in a while...thanks.

 
But it is a very moving song about aging and dying.
 gandalfbmg wrote:


so say we all

 
So say we all!!
 matude wrote:
B E S T    A L B U M    E V E R

 

so say we all
simply beautiful...
A classic. I need to pop this album in my car again. 

Everybody in my church loves this song...  and this whole album...
 
Old age sucks...assuming that's what this song is about.

Haven't heard this song in a while...thanks.


Everybody in my hotel room loves this song...

 
 terrapin52 wrote:
Document and previous to Document is all I will listen to.
 
Is it true what they say - that ignorance is bliss?

 paulmack wrote:
Something seemed to change for me regarding REM as they moved from the period Document/Green (and maybe even Out of Time) that I thought was so incredibly good - a mixture of great Southern stories where I could feel the humidity and sometimes the kudzu ("Oddfellows 151" and "Disturbance at the Heron House") and more current stuff (like "Orange Crush", "The One I Love", and "World Leader Pretend") and just straight ahead pithy rock - to Automatic for the People and on. For me, Automatic was half good and half too much like what was to follow with "New Adventures in Hi-fi" and onward. The half I loved included this song, "Monty Got A Raw Deal" and "Ignoreland" but the half I didn't seemed like a signpost for the future with "Everybody Hurts", "The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonight", etc. Before you write back to yell at me, I realize this is just my opinion and I don't think anybody who doesn't see it my way should feel bad or change their own opinions. I don't think you're idiots or fools or anything close to it. At least, not for THAT reason.
 

Dude you and I are right there when it comes to REM.{#Cheers}
Document and previous to Document is all I will listen to.
B E S T    A L B U M    E V E R
Tried to listen to this in the car the other day. Got about 3 songs in and had to stop. Not that I don't like it, it's just that after my son was born premature (and we didn't think he'd make it through the night), I went home alone, listened to this album and did a lot of soul searching, crying, weeping, and general grief.

My son is now 17, he's a growing boy turning into a man. Can't get past the emotions this album unleashes on me. One song at a time, maybe, the whole album? nada.


This is a fine song from a great album...  time flies when we're having fun...
 
 treehugger wrote:

I don't think there is going to be a next album, or at least not one with new material. 
 
R.E.M. announced in late September that they were disbanding.

 romeotuma wrote:

Yeah, I wish their new album held a candle to this one...  maybe their next album will be good... 
 
I don't think there is going to be a next album, or at least not one with new material. 
Great Album Start to Finish!


This song is soooo cool...  great album...




 More_Cowbell wrote:
This is a great disk!
 


Yeah, I wish their new album held a candle to this one...  maybe their next album will be good...

love this song...

 
This is a great disk!


always great to hear this song...  love it...

 
 paulmack wrote:
*snip*

Before you write back to yell at me, I realize this is just my opinion and I don't think anybody who doesn't see it my way should feel bad or change their own opinions. I don't think you're idiots or fools or anything close to it. At least, not for THAT reason.
 
and


Such a great tune.
leave it to memory
 {#Yes} romeotuma wrote:


awesome song...
 

Great song and even better album................


excellent...


Great album!
 TJS wrote:
Is there a bad song on this CD?
 

No, there isn't.

Perhaps "Sidewinder..." is below the (high) average of AFTP. And "Ignoreland" seems out of place but then again....

No, there isn't.




love it...


 californiatwin wrote:
This Stipe whining really really sucks!
 
Yeah, and it's sooooo sappy.


This song is fantastic...


 j7 wrote:
A remarkable song.
Does Bill play from "Life's Rich Pageant" or am I simply missing the days it's played?
THAT is REM's best work.
 
He plays a few songs from that album. But I agree with you, any song off that recording would be cool to hear on the RP play list.

 californiatwin wrote:
This Stipe whining really really sucks!
 
Yes, I tried REM on for a while, but I seem to have grown out of them. Stipe's whining is annoying at this point. {#Headache}
Makes everything stop this is so good.
I like this song a lot but it sounds like it was adapted from some ol' sea shanty...
A remarkable song.
Does Bill play from "Life's Rich Pageant" or am I simply missing the days it's played?
THAT is REM's best work.

Something seemed to change for me regarding REM as they moved from the period Document/Green (and maybe even Out of Time) that I thought was so incredibly good - a mixture of great Southern stories where I could feel the humidity and sometimes the kudzu ("Oddfellows 151" and "Disturbance at the Heron House") and more current stuff (like "Orange Crush", "The One I Love", and "World Leader Pretend") and just straight ahead pithy rock - to Automatic for the People and on. For me, Automatic was half good and half too much like what was to follow with "New Adventures in Hi-fi" and onward. The half I loved included this song, "Monty Got A Raw Deal" and "Ignoreland" but the half I didn't seemed like a signpost for the future with "Everybody Hurts", "The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonight", etc. Before you write back to yell at me, I realize this is just my opinion and I don't think anybody who doesn't see it my way should feel bad or change their own opinions. I don't think you're idiots or fools or anything close to it. At least, not for THAT reason.
The weather's turned grey and chilly today and this song fits it perfectly!
nice little ethereal yet earthy run...Emerson Lake & Palmer "Still...You Turn Me On" (never heard before but it was better than their other hyperactive Pink Floyd jams;  this was acoustic and funky). then Supergrass "Run" (which was new British retro rock doing old British spacey rock really really well!) and then this....i forgot how much i love this station!
Is there a bad song on this CD?
Thinking back about it now i can't beleive it took me 3 or 4 listens to like an album with this, drive, ignoreland, star me kitten, night swimming, and follow the river.  Definite 10 now.
I've never gotten tired of this song....an REM classic.


awesome song...




Love it... great song from a great album...


 i4niblind wrote:
One of the best songs from their best album ...  Bill, you are the reason i don't even bring music to work anymore..  You manage to slip in a taste of nearly all my favorite artists along with a note pad full of new songs for me to buy when I get home.  I Couldn't ask for a better music guru. 
 

Hear hear {#Cheers}
 i4niblind wrote:
One of the best songs from their best album ...  Bill, you are the reason i don't even bring music to work anymore..  You manage to slip in a taste of nearly all my favorite artists along with a note pad full of new songs for me to buy when I get home.  I Couldn't ask for a better music guru. 
 
i4niblind,

Nail head....hit.

By far my favorite REM album.  Close to perfection.
Try not to play this.
One of the best songs from their best album ...  Bill, you are the reason i don't even bring music to work anymore..  You manage to slip in a taste of nearly all my favorite artists along with a note pad full of new songs for me to buy when I get home.  I Couldn't ask for a better music guru. 
This Stipe whining really really sucks!
Love this band, love this albm.

This whole album is GREAT!  One of my favorites...

californiatwin wrote:
This is bad enough, not just to rate it as "sucko-barfo", but to illustrate - :puke:
yeah, but you do that to EVERY REM song...I'd add a little yawning emoticon if I wasn't so tired of knee-jerk REM bashing.
His voice is so emo. I'm sorry.
WHAT HE SAID. TJOpootertoot wrote:
Mindless? That would be really low on the list of adjectives I would use to describe this song, man. People who only love IRS-era REM are some of the saddest people I've ever encountered. Lesse - this album is 15 years old, their first LP came out in 1983. Call me crazy but I'm not so sure this counts as "later work." Yeah, man, I know. The early 80s were when you (and REM) were COOL.
as time goes by. you hear it anywhere. its boring me so much. :drunk:
I really like the lyrics on this song.
Decent song, but I really really wish it were Nightswimming instead.
This is bad enough, not just to rate it as "sucko-barfo", but to illustrate - :puke:
One of my absolutle favorite songs. I can't really say much beyond that.
rulebritannia wrote:
Mindless but likeable, like much of their later work.
Mindless? That would be really low on the list of adjectives I would use to describe this song, man. People who only love IRS-era REM are some of the saddest people I've ever encountered. Lesse - this album is 15 years old, their first LP came out in 1983. Call me crazy but I'm not so sure this counts as "later work." Yeah, man, I know. The early 80s were when you (and REM) were COOL.
These words paint an incredible picture... NewFee wrote:
Rem - Try Not to Breathe Lyrics I will try not to breathe. I can hold my head still with my hands at my knees. These eyes are the eyes of the old, shiver and fold. I will try not to breathe. This decision is mine. i have lived a full life And these are the eyes that I want you to remember. oh. I need something to fly over my grave again. I need something to breathe. I will try not to burden you. I can hold these inside. I will hold my breath Until all these shivers subside, Just look in my eyes. I will try not to worry you. I have seen things that you will never see. Leave it to memory me. I shudder to breathe. I want you to remember. oh. (you will never see) I need something to fly (something to fly) Over my grave again. (you will never see) I need something to breathe. (something to breathe) Baby, don't shiver now. Why do you shiver now? (I will see things you will never see) I need something to fly (something to fly) Over my grave again. (I will see things you will never see) I need something to breathe. oh. oh. oh. I will try not to worry you. I have seen things that you will never see. Leave it to memory me. Don't dare me to breathe. I want you to remember. oh. (you will never see) I need something to fly (something to fly) Over my grave again. (you will never see) I need something to breathe. (something to breathe) Baby, don't shiver now. Why do you shiver now? (I will see things you will never see) I need something to breathe. (something to breathe - I have seen things you will never see) I want you to remember.
pushkinjim wrote:
I agree ! Stop REM - they're so cliché - and tasteless!
yes...smart music is not for everyone.
Kevstar wrote:
Try not to play this anymore.
I agree ! Stop REM - they're so cliché - and tasteless!
Kevstar wrote:
Try not to play this anymore.
onapath wrote:
Not my favorite album of REMs.. the older stuff before this was better.... what happened?
scuse? this album's freakin' incredible and a modern day fucking classic. But please go back and program your iPod to Radio Free Europe et al. What "happened" is that bands with quality actually evolove over a period of 26 years. Try it, you might actually like it! :foot-in-mouth: :flamed: :shhh: :stop: :rolleyes: :eyes:
Shimmer wrote:
I've been an REM fan since the 80s, but this song does nothing for me. Filler. They can crank out songs like this without even waking up from a nap.
Mindless but likeable, like much of their later work.
thx for posting lyrics NewFee
Not my favorite album of REMs.. the older stuff before this was better.... what happened?
Try not to play this anymore.
I've been an REM fan since the 80s, but this song does nothing for me. Filler. They can crank out songs like this without even waking up from a nap.
Austin2Florida wrote:
:sleep: I love REM, but this song is boring me to tears.
So whose fault is that? I'm not a huge REM fan, but this is delicious.
Beautiful song, beautiful album.
How many bands can you say "I remember when they were at their best" about and be about 10-15 years off?
woozurdaddy wrote:
Jeez, I remember when REM was "alternative college music", not "commercially popular". Has it really been that long? One their best here....
Checked those grey hairs in the mirror lately? I've got a headful!">
:sleep: I love REM, but this song is boring me to tears.
So beautifully sad.
meghan89 wrote:
I can't stand REM. I hate his voice, its whiny, whiny, whiny. So many people love 'em, for the life of me I can't stomach it. Sometimes I catch myself listening to them and then I realize that I've thrown up on my lap.
:think: ....Sounds like you have a Much Bigger problem than not liking REM. Maybe you should ask your Doctor if RP is right for You. :eh:
Commercially popular music rarely soars this high artistically. Fantastic album and song!
REM does its Jethro Tull imitation . . . and it's a good one!
kult wrote:
Okay, so they're not what they were, but Automatic for the People really is one of THE most beautiful records ever made. And this song's great. AND I think Michael Stipe's voice is one of the best ever.
Automatic is an outstandingly great album, IMO one of the top 1% of all rock'n'roll albums of all time, bar none. It just is not REM's only or their last great album.
Okay, so they're not what they were, but Automatic for the People really is one of THE most beautiful records ever made. And this song's great. AND I think Michael Stipe's voice is one of the best ever.
snurfer wrote:
Completely disagree. Automatic for the people was really their last great album. After that there's no REM.
Completely disagree. Monster and New Adventures are as every bit as good as Automatic, and even what came after New Adventures is better than 95% of the other music released at the time.
meghan89 wrote:
I can't stand REM. I hate his voice, its whiny, whiny, whiny. So many people love 'em, for the life of me I can't stomach it. Sometimes I catch myself listening to them and then I realize that I've thrown up on my lap.
I was wondering who that idiot covered in puke was. :beat:
GoldenBoy wrote:
Completely disagree. Their last good album was New Adventures in Hi-Fi
Completely disagree. Automatic for the people was really their last great album. After that there's no REM.
:sunny: It's genius :sunny:
daveesh wrote:
for some reason, this one doesn't make it to the clear channel stations. this is one of my favorites from the last good album from these guys.
Completely disagree. Their last good album was New Adventures in Hi-Fi
beautiful
Rem - Try Not to Breathe Lyrics I will try not to breathe. I can hold my head still with my hands at my knees. These eyes are the eyes of the old, shiver and fold. I will try not to breathe. This decision is mine. i have lived a full life And these are the eyes that I want you to remember. oh. I need something to fly over my grave again. I need something to breathe. I will try not to burden you. I can hold these inside. I will hold my breath Until all these shivers subside, Just look in my eyes. I will try not to worry you. I have seen things that you will never see. Leave it to memory me. I shudder to breathe. I want you to remember. oh. (you will never see) I need something to fly (something to fly) Over my grave again. (you will never see) I need something to breathe. (something to breathe) Baby, don't shiver now. Why do you shiver now? (I will see things you will never see) I need something to fly (something to fly) Over my grave again. (I will see things you will never see) I need something to breathe. oh. oh. oh. I will try not to worry you. I have seen things that you will never see. Leave it to memory me. Don't dare me to breathe. I want you to remember. oh. (you will never see) I need something to fly (something to fly) Over my grave again. (you will never see) I need something to breathe. (something to breathe) Baby, don't shiver now. Why do you shiver now? (I will see things you will never see) I need something to breathe. (something to breathe - I have seen things you will never see) I want you to remember.
I can't stand REM. I hate his voice, its whiny, whiny, whiny. So many people love 'em, for the life of me I can't stomach it. Sometimes I catch myself listening to them and then I realize that I've thrown up on my lap.
This song lured me away from my work (grading-yuk!) to come make a comment--very satisfying.
REM as REM should sound like and REM as I like REM. Outstanding! :clap:
I always liked this song. RIP, REM.