"Strange Currencies" is a song by R.E.M.. It was included on the album Monster and was also released as the album's third single in 1995. The single hit number 9 on the UK Singles Chart and peaked at number 47 in the United States. Like "Everybody Hurts" on R.E.M.'s previous album, it is in 6/8.
Stipe has said that the song is about "when somebody actually thinks that, through words, they're going to be able to convince somebody that they are their one and only."
The song almost didn't make it on the album, due to its rhythmic similarities to "Everybody Hurts." Yet Michael Stipe's melody, the band felt, was too good to pass over, so the original rhythm was slightly reworked.
The video, directed by Mark Romanek, was shot on the first anniversary of the death of Michael Stipe's close friend River Phoenix and features River Phoenix's last girlfriend, actress Samantha Mathis.. It also features an early performance by actor and model Norman Reedus. It is in black and white, and shows the band playing in an industrial area. The images of the band are interspersed with other shots, some such as a child playing with a dead bird suggesting urban decay.