[ ]   [ ]   [ ]                        [ ]      [ ]   [ ]
R.E.M. — Nightswimming
Album: Automatic for the People
Avg rating:
7.8

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1717








Released: 1992
Length: 4:05
Plays (last 30 days): 0
Nightswimming deserves a quiet night

The photograph on the dashboard taken years ago,
turned around backwards so the windshield shows.
Every street light reveals a picture in reverse
Still it's so much clearer

I forgot my shirt at the water's edge
The moon is low tonight

Nightswimming deserves a quiet night
I'm not sure all these people understand
It's not like years ago
The fear of getting caught
The recklessness in water
They cannot see me naked
These things they go away
Replaced by every day

Nightswimming,
remembering that night
September's coming soon
I'm pining for the moon
And what if there were two
Side by side in orbit around the fairest sun?
The bright tide forever drawn
Could not describe nightswimming

You, I thought I knew you
You, I cannot judge
You, I thought you knew me
This one laughing quietly
Underneath my breath
Nightswimming

The photograph reflects
Every street light a reminder
Nightswimming
Deserves a quiet night
Deserves a quiet night
Comments (232)add comment
I get goose bumps every time I listen
Such a pure simple song, so well done. Love songs that can evoke such warm memories.
 
This song transports me to another time in my life.  A wonderful time, and one that did indeed, include night swimming.
Frankly, I consider the lyrics a decent effort if a Junior High School student wrote them. I think they're kind of trite. But for some reason the song just grips me. It does successfully conjure a mood.
8 DOWN TO 7 
We still go night swimming in Lake Michigan!{#Cheesygrin} It's great to have rambunctious grandkids!
 DavidS_UK wrote:
Somehow it's both a good song and a bit tedious...?
Certainly nasally, and at times almost feels a bit twee!
I suppose coming from UK the 'ole swimming hole' thing just doesn't communicate... I suppose one could go Night Swimming in the North Sea, but probably for less than the duration of this song before hypothermia gets you

  

You could be right about not relating to the imagery. Having grown up in Florida, this songs reminds me of many a creek, bay, bayou and beach at night. Beautiful song. 


I remember climbing over the fence of the local swimming pool at night after a few too many beers. My memories of that, I must have been 16 or so, just don't match the mood of this otherwise great song.
Somehow it's both a good song and a bit tedious...?
Certainly nasally, and at times almost feels a bit twee!
I suppose coming from UK the 'ole swimming hole' thing just doesn't communicate... I suppose one could go Night Swimming in the North Sea, but probably for less than the duration of this song before hypothermia gets you
Where are the REM Bands now a days? {#Bananajam}
Has true talent given way to Justin B. pseudo music? {#Grumpy}
 Proclivities wrote:

This is a good tune; I believe John Paul Jones worked out the string arrangements on this number.

 
"Tune"? What "tune"? I generally like R.E.M. but this excuse for a melody line spoils an otherwise pleasant chord progression. And lovely strings and oboe. Wee shame.
This song reminds me of the title music of 1980's sitcom Cheers - just the bar room sounding piano I suppose.
this song instantly places me on cape cod the summer after college graduation swimming in the moonlight in some lake i will never remember the name of unless i contact that old girlfriend which i will never do. better to leave that just as it is. 
Everyone at the ole swimmin' hole loves this song.
Very nostalgic. The song and the video.
My favorite.
 bexhillos wrote:
Always been my favourite REM album and I never tire of nightswimming, rate this very highly

 
This is a good tune; I believe John Paul Jones worked out the string arrangements on this number.
September's coming soon
This is awful.  Didn't know R.E.M. could be this bad:  nasal, whiny and tediously immature.  Gave it a "2".
 bexhillos wrote:
Always been my favourite REM album and I never tire of nightswimming, rate this very highly

 
what about monster?
I am 16 again. 
....there last brilliant album. Now so long ago!   {#Doh}
Always been my favourite REM album and I never tire of nightswimming, rate this very highly
The world needs more REM..
{#Clap}  Big fat thumbs up!!
big stud Romeo Tuma wrote:
Oh, it is quite profound, Cynaera... it is about the carefree good times of youth... looking back at the past with a little joy, and a little sadness... great song... "September is coming soon..."
 

Time flies when we're having fun...  love this song...
 
Meaning, PSD blessed me with this song....
All hail, PSD....
RP on a roll this morning. Love this song, and it brings back great memories of "night swimming" with my college friends. 
Simply.......just......beautiful.
 Cynaera wrote:

Okay. Dancing.  And grinning because I just love this song. It prolly has no intrinsic value or cosmic impact, but it has a lovely tune and a good beat. Sometimes, that's all I need...

 
Miss you so much, Ann...

rest in peace... 
 tutakea wrote:
one of the most beautiful songs of all time. period
 
Yes, I agree...  love it...

 
 tutakea wrote:
one of the most beautiful songs of all time. period
 
agreed.
 tutakea wrote:
one of the most beautiful songs of all time. period
 
+1
my favorite by R.E.M.
Lake Pend Oreille
one of the most beautiful songs of all time. period
 Businessgypsy wrote:
Always experienced this song as a chanted mantra, a cycle intended to induce a state of mind.
 
Yes, and that state would be called Dronetana.

 Businessgypsy wrote:
Always experienced this song as a chanted mantra, a cycle intended to induce a state of mind.
 


Beautiful melody, just wonderful.{#Clap}
Droney. 

R.I.P. R.E.M.


I always thought that Nightswimming and Find the River went great together.  Maybe because I've done some night swimming in the river back home with some very good friends.

Always experienced this song as a chanted mantra, a cycle intended to induce a state of mind.


This song makes me want to go skinny dipping tonight...  what a nostalgic memory of youth...  love it...
Nice to hear something from REM that doesn't get much airplay generally. They are a good band...but boy oh boy am I tired of their "hits".
someone once commented on the forums about listening to this album, with headphones, over and over, was an incredible experience... I have done it and I must say that yes, it is an incredible experience that peaks when this song is playing... just incredible! I would recommend it for anyone {#Clap}


What a brilliant song...  from a seminal album...  love it...


 
I heard Ingrid Michaelson perform a fantastic cover of this song a few months ago at the xpn cafe. An amazing rendition to an already great song!
R.E.M. = rare, easy, mystic :-))
This song should be their representative anthem; not that crap everybody hurts or losing my religion!{#Rolleyes}
 Cynaera wrote:

Okay. Dancing.  And grinning because I just love this song. It prolly has no intrinsic value or cosmic impact, but it has a lovely tune and a good beat. Most of the time Sometimes, that's all I need...

 
Fixed that for ya!{#Cheesygrin} Great point, it is music, it's purpose is to please the ears by jinkies!{#Music}
 Cynaera wrote:

Okay. Dancing.  And grinning because I just love this song. It prolly has no intrinsic value or cosmic impact, but it has a lovely tune and a good beat. Sometimes, that's all I need...
 


Oh, it is quite profound, Cynaera... it is about the carefree good times of youth... looking back at the past with a little joy, and a little sadness... great song... "September is coming soon..."

 

{#Notworthy}
 romeotuma wrote:

This really is a fantastic song...  we should dance...

 
Okay. Dancing.  And grinning because I just love this song. It prolly has no intrinsic value or cosmic impact, but it has a lovely tune and a good beat. Sometimes, that's all I need...

 lily34 wrote:


agreed
 


This really is a fantastic song...  we should dance...



 peter_james_bond wrote:

Have you noticed that the people with the most over the top negative posts tend to also have the most negative ratings? I wonder if they have problems with anger management or if they are negative people in general? I don't think it's the second thing because I tend to be a negative person but I rate songs positively. They may simply be very judgmental, by that, I mean they may judge harshly something that they find is not to their liking. I suspect these folks are actually pretty decent people, but if I was accused of a crime I wouldn't want one of them as the judge or in the jury.
 
Nice call Peter....James
If I don't like a song I rarely comment and never rate.
I was raised...."if you have nothing good to say...don't say anything at all"
Although that's good in general conversation,it's probably not good in a forum such as this.
All I can say is that I love this format and this station.
Engaged in night swimming all through high school summers. Sometimes with friends, but usually alone. I would look forward to it all day long while at work. There was nothing so relaxing. I made the rounds around Cincinnati; some pools were obviously easier to access than others. Four Towers Apts. was my favorite. Yes, I had a photgraph on the my dashboard of my '69 Buick Skylark. {#Sunny}
Such a fine album. Helped me through some tough times when it was current. Still sounds fresh. {#Clap}


love it...
 pope183 wrote:


OMG!!   really?!! did you hear that  one time from a friend of a friend when you were at band camp ? !!!!

(I still give this song a 9 ,  btw, but I have to admit , that rumor from a guy i knew whos sister's friend's cousin  worked at a resturaunt once in high school makes me like it less cause i am just gullible that way too. allthough i heard it was 4 am and he like so totaly forced them some how like against their will or like whatever and such and he kicked a baby duck on the way out the door. and such.)

 

I really love this song, to my surprise. And thank you for making me laugh, Pope183.
Simply. Awesome.
 romeotuma wrote:


This is a great song...  sweet piano notes and profound lyrics...
 

agreed


This is a great song...  sweet piano notes and profound lyrics...


 Danimal174 wrote:


I haven't heard this story before; as a matter of fact, I had heard that he and Mario were friends. If it is true, however, I agree that it was a pretty shitty move.

 

Very good friends, from what I've read.So I would take this story with the proverbial grain of salt...

This album might be a desert island disk for me. Agreed re the previous comment about playing the album at 1:00am on a road trip.
Pure bliss. Best time to listen to this album is at about 1am on a long road trip, the highway stretched out before you and the full moon in your window.
but the cover of that album is brilliant!!
Not one of their best songs.....i hope.....
tedious, like most REM


love it...


 holborne wrote:

...Word has it he arrived at one of Mario Batali's restaurants five minutes before closing, forced the kitchen to say open until 3 AM for him and his entourage, ran up a $2000 tab, and didn't tip. Like, completely stiffed the staff. People who do that shit belong in the 9th circle of Hell, having their heads gnawed off by Jeremy Piven.

(I still give this song a 9, btw, but I have to admit that story makes me like it less.)
 

OMG!!   really?!! did you hear that  one time from a friend of a friend when you were at band camp ? !!!!

(I still give this song a 9 ,  btw, but I have to admit , that rumor from a guy i knew whos sister's friend's cousin  worked at a resturaunt once in high school makes me like it less cause i am just gullible that way too. allthough i heard it was 4 am and he like so totaly forced them some how like against their will or like whatever and such and he kicked a baby duck on the way out the door. and such.)

 Atlantis wrote:
This song is so goddam awful and twee, it makes me so depressed, I almost feel like killing myself.  But then, I stop and think - Hey!  That is why REM are so bad!  That is what they WANT you to do!  So I resist.
 

 
Danimal174 wrote:
Hey, don't let this song stop you.
 
Have you noticed that the people with the most over the top negative posts tend to also have the most negative ratings? I wonder if they have problems with anger management or if they are negative people in general? I don't think it's the second thing because I tend to be a negative person but I rate songs positively. They may simply be very judgmental, by that, I mean they may judge harshly something that they find is not to their liking. I suspect these folks are actually pretty decent people, but if I was accused of a crime I wouldn't want one of them as the judge or in the jury.
 holborne wrote:

He's a very, very fine musician, but, by all accounts, a real prick. Word has it he arrived at one of Mario Batali's restaurants five minutes before closing, forced the kitchen to say open until 3 AM for him and his entourage, ran up a $2000 tab, and didn't tip. Like, completely stiffed the staff. People who do that shit belong in the 9th circle of Hell, having their heads gnawed off by Jeremy Piven.

(I still give this song a 9, btw, but I have to admit that story makes me like it less.)
 
Photobucket




This song is soooo good for the ears...


I'm not getting this one . . . plods along, orchestration, vocals, lyrics, *shrug
 holborne wrote:

He's a very, very fine musician, but, by all accounts, a real prick. Word has it he arrived at one of Mario Batali's restaurants five minutes before closing, forced the kitchen to say open until 3 AM for him and his entourage, ran up a $2000 tab, and didn't tip. Like, completely stiffed the staff. People who do that shit belong in the 9th circle of Hell, having their heads gnawed off by Jeremy Piven.

(I still give this song a 9, btw, but I have to admit that story makes me like it less.)
 

I haven't heard this story before; as a matter of fact, I had heard that he and Mario were friends. If it is true, however, I agree that it was a pretty shitty move.

 Atlantis wrote:
This song is so goddam awful and twee, it makes me so depressed, I almost feel like killing myself.  But then, I stop and think - Hey!  That is why REM are so bad!  That is what they WANT you to do!  So I resist.
 

Hey, don't let this song stop you.

 holborne wrote:

He's a very, very fine musician, but, by all accounts, a real prick. Word has it he arrived at one of Mario Batali's restaurants five minutes before closing, forced the kitchen to say open until 3 AM for him and his entourage, ran up a $2000 tab, and didn't tip. Like, completely stiffed the staff. People who do that shit belong in the 9th circle of Hell, having their heads gnawed off by Jeremy Piven.

(I still give this song a 9, btw, but I have to admit that story makes me like it less.)
 
Michael is a tad eccentric from my observations but no more so than many celebs. In fact it seems he goes out of his way not to be recognized. Somehow, I think the above story is a bit embellished. Most restaurants add an automatic gratuity of at least 15% to large parties. Also, if you don't want business at that time of the evening, close earlier. Most restaurant owners I know welcome over $2k worth of business, especially if the night is slow. What did he threaten the kitchen with, anyway, plastic cutlery?




This song is so magnificent... good for the ears...


 Papernapkin wrote:
This is Muzak.
 
Elton John called, he wants his maudlin back.


Great song from a great album... love it...


This is Muzak.
 kaybee wrote:
I know a lot of listeners here don't like Michael Stipe.  I happen to like his voice and  especially like the way it rasps in some parts.
 
He's a very, very fine musician, but, by all accounts, a real prick. Word has it he arrived at one of Mario Batali's restaurants five minutes before closing, forced the kitchen to say open until 3 AM for him and his entourage, ran up a $2000 tab, and didn't tip. Like, completely stiffed the staff. People who do that shit belong in the 9th circle of Hell, having their heads gnawed off by Jeremy Piven.

(I still give this song a 9, btw, but I have to admit that story makes me like it less.)


This song is so goddam awful and twee, it makes me so depressed, I almost feel like killing myself.  But then, I stop and think - Hey!  That is why REM are so bad!  That is what they WANT you to do!  So I resist.
I know a lot of listeners here don't like Michael Stipe.  I happen to like his voice and  especially like the way it rasps in some parts.
 Stingray wrote:
SORRY - NO! CLEARLY NOT!
This is "Opera", not "Rock"...
 

 

Opera wishes it could be this good and simple and evocative.


 Stingray wrote:
SORRY - NO! CLEARLY NOT!
This is "Opera", not "Rock"...

 

Ever hear of a rock opera
SORRY - NO! CLEARLY NOT!
This is "Opera", not "Rock"...
Love this song... so utterly evocative: like a movie. Pungent, visual. Plaintive. Late summer night, an eternity ago... Achingly good.
Is that an oboe I hear toward the end? :ask:
This song is so absolutely fantastic...I remember this was the 3rd cd I ever bought for myself, on a school field trip. We stopped for lunch at a mall, and I didn't eat so I could go look in the music store. While I had heard REM songs on the radio and really liked them, this disc put me under their spell. I have bought this cd 3 times now, twice because only this song had a scratch, and the disc is not complete without this song...
chyk5 wrote:
Keep some wading boots and a shovel handy then.
Cheerio, then, I'm off to find my wading boots and shovel.....
99 wrote:
I feel bad for the REM haters. I really do. If you don't like the band that's fine. I think that you're missing out on some great music but so be it. What I don't understand is the energy that some of you put into letting the rest of us know that you don't like REM. What's the point?

I don't understand why anyone should work so hard to inform everyone else what they don't like.
I'm hardpressed to think of a better "ending' trio of songs to an album than the trio on Automatic: "Man on the Moon", "Nightswimming" and "Find the River". great album.
I'm not a big fan of the current REM, but don't you think the 1980s REM was gutsy, different, fun, and influential? I saw them about 5 times in the 80s, and thought they were incredible, with great range. pushkinjim wrote:
The point is that everytime REM is played, a very bad odour comes out of the speakers - the energy put into the comments is an attempt to stop the shit that REM is from spreading more. REM = mute + :puke:
:ask:
They do have some great stuff (I like the 'In Time' collection) but it certainly seems like their pop heyday is behind them.
pushkinjim wrote:
The point is that everytime REM is played, a very bad odour comes out of the speakers - the energy put into the comments is an attempt to stop the shit that REM is from spreading more. REM = mute + :puke:
Keep some wading boots and a shovel handy then. Those of us that enjoy it will keep it playing.
99 wrote:
I feel bad for the REM haters. I really do. If you don't like the band that's fine. I think that you're missing out on some great music but so be it. What I don't understand is the energy that some of you put into letting the rest of us know that you don't like REM. What's the point?
The point is that everytime REM is played, a very bad odour comes out of the speakers - the energy put into the comments is an attempt to stop the shit that REM is from spreading more. REM = mute + :puke:
themotion wrote:
So, is this before or after they got bad? ... :think: ... Sounds good to me.
After, but I agree in this case....
So, is this before or after they got bad? ... :think: ... Sounds good to me.
perfect! i did some pretty interesting nightswimming this weekend!
I feel bad for the REM haters. I really do. If you don't like the band that's fine. I think that you're missing out on some great music but so be it. What I don't understand is the energy that some of you put into letting the rest of us know that you don't like REM. What's the point?
biologenius wrote:
Now, all you R.E.M. whiners, is the time to confess that you actually like R.E.M., you are just desperately trying to keep up an attitude.
No, still a blech. Like some other songs of theirs, though. This one grates on every nerve.
liser wrote:
haha i like nightswimming quite a bit more than this song.
The photograph on the dashboard taken years ago turned around backwards so the windshield shows every street light reveals a picture and a verse *chills* I know REM is not everyones cup of tea but I love this band
queenjill wrote:
My thoughts exactly. The piano sounds like it's being played by a 4th grader (one of those non-savant ones). There's no subtlety or, well, MUSIC to it. It's just banging banging banging.
Speaking of which, when you hear like the first two chords, doesn't it sound like Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'"? I always go "WTF?" and then calm back down on chord 3. :cheesygrin:
Zepplock wrote:
what a cheesy song )
What an incomprehensible comment.
:yawn:
mezzotint wrote:
Definitely my favorite REM album, and one of the best songs the band has done.
agreed
what a cheese song )
I seemed to remember that the title had something to do with a local Athens restaurant-- not far off. According to Wikipedia, "The album name refers to the motto of Athens, Georgia eatery 'Weaver D's Delicious Fine Foods.'" mattt wrote:
Doesn't the title of this album sound like something Strong Bad would yell? Automatic for the people!
mattt wrote:
Doesn't the title of this album sound like something Strong Bad would yell? Automatic for the people!
It sounds EXACTLY like something Strong Bad would yell. That is spot on.
mattt wrote:
Doesn't the title of this album sound like something Strong Bad would yell? Automatic for the people!
Oh, Stwongbad...you're CWAZY! Definitely my favorite REM album, and one of the best songs the band has done.
I don't the banana is dancing to this tune! musicachica wrote:
:bananapiano: Great song!
biologenius wrote:
Now, all you R.E.M. whiners, is the time to confess that you actually like R.E.M., you are just desperately trying to keep up an attitude.
... I so agree with this post :high-five: wonderful trak, dig the piano :music:
Thank goodness REM got elected into the RnR Hall of Fame...now we can hear even more REM!!!
Doesn't the title of this album sound like something Strong Bad would yell? Automatic for the people!
agnes wrote:
I like this tune, I always have, but the piano is so ploddy... it could use some emotion.
My thoughts exactly. The piano sounds like it's being played by a 4th grader (one of those non-savant ones). There's no subtlety or, well, MUSIC to it. It's just banging banging banging.