Listen to R.E.M.'s Unheard Live Version of "World Leader Pretend," Released for "30 Days, 30 Songs"

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R.E.M. has made it quite well known that they dislike Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. When Trump used “It’s The End of the World as We Know It” during a campaign rally last year, frontman Michael Stipe released a statement on Twitter saying, “Go f—- yourselves, the lot of you—you sad, attention-grabbing, power-hungry little men. Do not use our music or my voice for you moronic charade of a campaign.” As if that weren’t enough, bassist Mike Mills said, “Personally, I think the Orange Clown will do anything for attention. I hate giving it to him.”

So needless to say, R.E.M. fits right in with the rest of the artists participating in “30 Days, 30 Songs,” the anti-Trump protest song project.

Unfortunately, since the band parted ways back in 2011, they aren’t contributing a new song to the project. Instead, we get a previously unreleased version of the song “World Leader Pretend,” off of their album Green. In their statement with the song, the band simply said, “A perfect song for these strange times.”

You can listen to the song above, and read the lyrics below.

“World Leader Pretend” Lyrics

I sit at my table and wage war on myself
It seems like it’s all, it’s all for nothing
I know the barricades
And I know the mortar in the wall breaks
I recognize the weapons, I’ve used them well

This is my mistake
Let me make it good
I raised the wall
And I will be the one to knock it down

I’ve a rich understanding of my finest defences
I proclaim that claims are left unstated
I demand a rematch

I decree a stalemate
I divine my deeper motives
I recognize the weapons
I’ve practiced them well
I fitted them myself

It’s amazing what devices you can sympathize
Empathize
This is my mistake, let me make it good
I raised the wall
And I will be the one to knock it down

Reach out for me
Hold me tight
Hold that memory
Let my machine talk to me
Let my machine talk to me

This is my world, and I am the World Leader Pretend
This is my life, and this is my time
I have been given the freedom to do as I see fit
It’s high time I razed the walls that I’ve constructed

It’s amazing what devices you can sympathize
Empathize
This is my mistake, let me make it good
I raised the wall
And I will be the one to knock it down

You fill in the mortar
You fill in the harmony
You fill in the mortar
I raised the wall
And I’m the only one
I will be the one to knock it down

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