Automatic for the People is the eighth album by the American alternative rock band R.E.M., released in 1992 on Warner Bros. Records. While R.E.M. had intended to make a harder-rocking album after dealing primarily with acoustic based sounds on its previous record Out of Time (1991), the group eventually abandoned that goal and created an album that was musically subdued and dealt with mortality. Automatic for the People reached number two on the U.S. album charts and yielded six singles. The album has sold 16 million copies worldwide and is widely considered as one of the best records released in the 1990s.
After promotional duties for their previous album Out of Time in May 1991, the members of R.E.M. began work on their next album. Starting the first week of June, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills, and drummer Bill Berry met several times a week in a rehearsal studio to work on new material. Once a month they would take a week-long break. The musicians would often trade instruments: Buck would play mandolin, Mills would play piano or organ and Berry would play bass. Buck explained that writing without drums was productive for the band members. The band, intent on