Further to last week’s report on the upcoming US tour featuring the Minus 5, The Baseball Project, and the Steve Wynn IV, we can now confirm that Mike Mills will be pinch-hitting for Peter at the Baseball Project’s show at the La Lunera Festival on August 7th. Mike will join Scott McCaughey, Steve Wynn, and Linda Pitmon for the show in Sos Del Rey Catolico, Spain. We turned to Scott for more insight on the show and he told us that it should be a very special evening. “Sos Del Rey Catolico,” said Scott, “is a reputedly gorgeous medieval village in the Pyrenees Mountains, and Gary Louris and Mark Olson of the Jayhawks will also be on the bill that night.” No word at this point as to whether or not Mike will be playing additional shows, but we will, of course, keep you posted.

Several new reviews of the Reckoning Deluxe Edition have come out in the press this week including Mojo’s five-star review and Q magazine’s four-star review, not to mention very positive reviews by Record Collector, Classic Rock, and Uncut. “Reck Deluxe” was also acknowledged as “brilliant” in New York Magazine’s “Approval Matrix” this week. You can read all of the reviews in the Press Section at remhq.com (please note that the reviews are available in PDF format).

Also, be sure to check out these online reviews of the Deluxe Edition at altsounds.com and The Onion.

Rolling Stone (see top photo) has given Reckoning Songs From the Olympia a four-star review in this week’s issue and lists the digital EP at the head of their “Top Singles” collection this week.

Paste Magazine lists the “The 20 Best R.E.M. Songs of All Time” in their online edition. You can listen to clips of each of the songs and decide for yourself if the songs in their top 20 match up with your own. (UPDATE: And PopCandy offers their on twist on Paste’s poll)…

Finally, Athens has made the National Resources Defense Council’s Top 15 Smart Cities list in their Medium Cities’ category (cities with a population between 100,000 – 250,000). Athens was ranked 14th out of the top 15 based on such criteria as air quality, energy production and conservation, green buildings and green space, recycling, and water quality and conservation. This is great recognition for our town which was also recently dubbed a 2009 Dozen Distinctive Destination city by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Way to go Athens!