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BEST OF 2008: ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Veteran alternative rock band R.E.M., with frontman Michael Stipe, played the Hollywood Bowl in late May. The Times' Richard Cromelin wrote: "They aren't architects of sonic grandeur like U2 or Radiohead, or virtuosic instigators of rock catharsis like Springsteen and the E Street Band. But R.E.M. remains in that rarefied company because of an inner fire that insists on a connection with the listener, a shared sense of wonder and outrage at the world. It was there Thursday. All it needed was a little more volume. Ken Hively/Los Angeles Times
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