HAD the previous two decades not happened, REM's last two albums might have been better received.

They were pleasant enough, with the odd Radio Two friendly track.

But fortunately for fans of their 80s and early 90s brilliance, Accelerate is a nod back to those days.

The album races along in a little more than half an hour - but what a half an hour it is.

Living Well is the Best Revenge and the outstanding Horse to Water are particular highlights but it is hard to find a dud anywhere.

This is the fourteenth album from the indie rockers and one of their finest to date.

As always, Michael Stipe's voice shines through while the rockier sound of the album doesn't harm any of REM's strong melodies for which they have become renowned.

And this is their best effort since the early 1990s and the success of previous albums.