Friday, October 12, 2007

I’m in the middle of your picture

I’m wicked busy but a couple of quick notes on the new Radiohead album.

In short, it’s stellar. If these pages gave out star ratings I’d have to go four-and-a-half, maybe even five. It’s that good. Perhaps not as conceptual as OK Computer but good in so, so many ways. It’s the sound of a group of guys who know exactly what they want and what they want to sound like.

There are two songs that jump right out as being not only great but kind of new territory for the boys.

The first is the beautiful little synth/piano-driven tune called “All I Need.” Easily their best “love” song since “True Love Waits.” And very Radiohead lyrics with images of dogs in parked cars, moths and lights, and insects at night. Worth the cost right there, that one. And a nifty little beat to get her along too.

The second is the positively incredible “House of Cards” that I can’t even compare to anything else of theirs—it even has a little R&B influence. I’ll even come right out and say it might be one of the most beautiful songs they’ve ever written and up there with Fake Plastic Trees in terms of Thom’s finest vocal moments.

That being said, “Reckoner”, “Jigsaw Falling into Place” and “Weird Fishes/Apreggi” are great tunes as well. Most of the album seems to have a much more mid-tempo vibe. Which is quite nice. It’s a lot like Kid A in that way.

The biggest change to me seems to be a much more musical and melodic focus as opposed to a political (see “2+2=5”) or noise (see “Hunting Bears”) or fuzzed-out (see “Myxomitosis”) sound. It could just be the boys are mellowing a bit and, perhaps like me, not letting the state of the world influence everything they do.

And for the love of Pete, the last words of the album during “Videotape” are “today has been the most perfect day I’ve ever seen.” What could be more un-Radiohead than that?

Also worth noting and meriting its own review soon is the new Band of Horses’ “Cease to Begin” which is amazing itself. Just listen to “Is there a ghost” and you’ll see what I mean.


Blogger minus five said...

i think i listened to this album three times today while i was working. i went to buy it yesterday on their site after i saw your announcement, but i wasn't able to download it all day or night. which sucked. i think their site must have been jammed with traffic, which was causing problems. so i got it this morning. thanks for the info. again.

i'm off to check out band of horses.

10:10 PM  
Blogger minus five said...

so i got that band of horses album yesterday and it's freakin' awesome. today, i've played it seven times.

12:33 AM  
Blogger Howard said...

Yeah, last week was one of those rare ones where great music just descends on you. Glad you're diggin' it.

1:36 AM  
Blogger a/ok said...

I can't stop listening to this album. Band of Horses will be the next purchase, though I still haven't grown tired of their last one...(is that lame?)

4:10 PM  
Blogger Alison said...

i love it.

4:13 PM  

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