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ARTSY: Losing My Religion

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This curious illustration has been indelibly etched on our hard-drive ever since we first saw it on the back of an REM tour program in 1984 (Tower Theater, DBs opened if memory serves). Ostensibly, it’s an old-timey ad for a bicycle maker, but what is that monkey doing with that parrot? And what the hell were they doing up on that mountaintop? Back in 1984, when we were convinced that Michael Stipe was some kind of latter-day Delphic oracle in thrift-store rags, we were sure there was some mystical significance encrypted in this surrealistic tableau. Ah, teenagers.

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