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In Rainbows

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Editors’ Notes

Much like U2, Radiohead do regular battle with their group identity, harvesting new ideas and pathways to the future while simultaneously acknowledging their past legacy. With 2007’s In Rainbows, Radiohead continue to seek new patterns and blends without succumbing to pure art for art’s sake. Kid A and Amnesiac took them to the ambient edge and they’ve been clawing themselves slowly back to the pop playground ever since. Thom Yorke is a naturally gifted vocalist whose acapella can lift any melody to stratospheric heights and when his group turns down the volume and settles into a subdued groove (“Nude, “ “Weird Fishes/ Arpeggie”), the result is a surreal new age vibe where what could be sterile, slick tones are infused with touches of extreme emotionalism. There is always a sense of danger lurking in the guitars and keyboards; storm clouds frequently gather by mid-song. The angry clank of “15 Step,” the marching synthesizer doom behind “All I Need,” the obscuring, mysterious reverb of “House of Cards” create soundscapes that aren’t afraid to dream beyond the usual instrumental limits.

Customer Reviews

Brilliant album but...

... why buy it here when the whole point of the album was to offer it for whatever price you are willing to pay for it on their website? I downloaded it, listened to it and enjoyed it so much that I payed to download it again and all the money goes to the artist.

A pot of gold

This is a beautiful album, full of haunting melodies and intricate rhythms, as well as thoughtful and thought-provoking lyrics. It is easily their most complete work since OK Computer, but incorporates some of the best sonic experiments from their more recent albums, such as Kid A and Hail to the Thief. The complex acoustic and electronic soundscapes created here provide a perfect backdrop for Thom Yorke's mesmerising vocal performance. All of the musicians' are playing at their best, and it is great to hear Johnny Greenwood's effects-laden guitar coming back into the centre of the mix, all the time supporting the song rather than just providing guitar for guitar's sake. The more you listen to these songs, the more you hear - one of the signs of truly great music. The production by Nigel Godrich is razor-sharp and perfectly complements the music. Radiohead might have left it to the last minute but, for me, this is album of the year.

The return to OK Computer

If your looking for radiohead at their best, a second edition to OK computer, then look no further. With all the fuss created by the format of in rainbows release its easy to overlook the quality of music here. When i say a return to Ok computer, i dont mean that the band have just gone back to mixing riffs with electronic rock, rather a return to the more accessable rock/pop mixed the lyrical content presenting the sometimes scary truths of the modern worldthat radiohead championed in 97. The album strats of wit the out 0f time 15 teps which at first thosent seem to fit, but give it time and and the soft guitar and uniqe vocals of yorke will win you over. Bodysnatchers sees a return to more rock orientated radiohead, that could be found on 2003's hail to the thief but relates better to the music of the bends, while nude is a hallowing track that has be knocking around since Ok and is a supreme highlight. Weird Fishes/Apreggi, is a superb number with its slowing building instrumental knocked up agianst yorks strikeing lyrics telling us how easy it is to "hit the bottom", building to a slightlly epic climax. the slow electronic rythme of All I Needs is another highlight, which tackles with love and obbsession, while the acoustic Faust arp is a gentle number that utalises yorkes vocals. But its reckoner that is the real highlight of the album, the constant drum beat mixed with yorkes unique vocal stylae and the soft almost jazz guitar rythme is genius, an instant classic. The album then plays out brillantly, with the alomst regge house of cards, followed by the exellent brooding Jigsaw falling into place wich sees yorke telling us the madness of a city weekend of binge, and the stripped back videotape which brings the album to a touching conclusion with its gentle piano and rythmic drum loops. all in all this is a brillant album, and there best since or Ok, and probally better than even the bends, and while its not quite free anymore its more than worth the investment.


Formed: 1989 in Oxford, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Radiohead were one of the few alternative bands of the early '90s to draw heavily from the grandiose arena rock that characterized U2's early albums. But the band internalized that epic sweep, turning it inside out to tell tortured, twisted tales of angst and alienation. Vocalist Thom Yorke's pained lyrics were brought to life by the group's three-guitar attack, which relied on texture — borrowing as much from My Bloody Valentine and Pink Floyd as R.E.M. and Pixies — instead of virtuosity....
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