REM, the band, considered one of the most influential indie groups of all time has announced that they are to split after 31 years.

The Athens based band said in a statement on their website that it was time to call it a day and that 20011 was the right moment for REM to split.

"To our Fans and Friends: As R.E.M., and as lifelong friends and co-conspirators, we have decided to call it a day as a band. We walk away with a great sense of gratitude, of finality, and of astonishment at all we have accomplished. To anyone who ever felt touched by our music, our deepest thanks for listening," R.E.M said on their website.

"The skill in attending a party knows when it's time to leave. We built something extraordinary together. We did this thing. And now we're going to walk away from it. I hope our fans realize this wasn't an easy decision; but all things must end, and we wanted to do it right, to do it our way," lead singer Michael Stipe said.