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R.E.M. PLANS TO 'ACCELERATE' IN APRIL

R.E.M. will release a new album, called Accelerate, on April 1st. Singer Michael Stipe recently hinted that material was in the works, and now Billboard.com is reporting that the band's 14th studio album is officially due this spring. R.E.M. debuted most of the songs while on tour last summer, and the band's manager says fans can expect "rockers" -- not ballads on the upcoming set. The Georgia group's last album, Around the Sun, came out in 2004. A live set was released this past fall.

R.E.M. will hit the road this spring, but no date have been announced yet -- aside from an appearance at the Langerado Festival, which runs March 6th through the 9th in Big Cypress, Florida.

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