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Old 02-20-2011, 03:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Weekend Radiohead disappointment

Radiohead's new album, The King of Limbs, was released yesterday. At present, it's available only by download from a band-operated website. I listened to it in the car on my way to the day's snowboarding (which was extremely icy and windy, btw -- an unfriendly combination!). My initial reaction was disappointment, I'm sorry to say. King of Limbs is to In Rainbows as Amnesiac was to Kid A: a subdued follow-up that seizes upon the quietest, most experimental elements of its predecessor and creates an entire album out of them. Of course, "entire album" may be something of an overstatement, given that King of Limbs has only eight songs -- at barely 37 minutes long, it's a brief and cryptic effort. With no true standout tracks, the album feels decapitated, as if the real album was supposed to have been 10-12 songs, with at least a few of them memorable. I enjoy moody, melancholy electronica as much as the next listener, but an overdose of it creates the sense of wandering into an obscure movie score, or just a library of outtakes.

PJ Harvey, the greatest female rocker of all time, also released a new album this past week. Having heard a few snatches of it, I don't have high hopes, but I hope to be pleasantly surprised.
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Old 02-20-2011, 05:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Damn was looking forward to it..Haven't listened to it yet anyway I'll at least check it out.
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Old 02-20-2011, 06:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Radiohead is probably the only band where I like their "hits" better than the rest of the album. I don't know why I felt the need to say that here as I wouldn't consider myself a fan at all. But I can appreciate Thom Yorke's take on the art of making music.
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:00 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Haven't heard it yet, I actually had no idea, thanks for clueing me in. I will give you a report once I give it a listen.. I'm a big Radiohead fan.

One thing I do know however, is that sometimes weird music grows on you. I've listened to albums and initially hated them, and then after listening to them more I started to really appreciate them. I think I kinda felt that way with In Rainbows at first.

I can say I'm the opposite of freshy, I tend to like the non-hit songs better. Most of the time they are too creative and "out-there" for mainstream radio to bear.
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Old 02-20-2011, 09:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoboMaster View Post
One thing I do know however, is that sometimes weird music grows on you. I've listened to albums and initially hated them, and then after listening to them more I started to really appreciate them. I think I kinda felt that way with In Rainbows at first.
The music on The King of Limbs isn't any more advanced or difficult than what the band has been doing since 2000; it's just less dramatic and melodically rich, IMO. An eight-song album is too short to afford two or three cuts that are essentially glorified rhythm tracks. Of course, Radiohead astutely compensates for the diminution in quality with a reduction in quantity, so we have that consolation.
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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While I've enjoyed much of Radiohead's music, they've never really shown a huge progression. The people that thought they progressed into something eccentric or innovative when they started the electronic infusion were just less educated on a wide array of music.

Most of what is mentioned in the original post is essentially what I'd expect from Radiohead. Maybe after this album, you too have grown to expect what they give.

With that, I will probably purchase a hard copy (vinyl) if/when it is released. I can wait, but I'm sure I'll be listening to mp3s this week.

Lol at "PJ Harvey, the greatest female rocker of all time..." I dig her for sure.. this is just the first time I've read/heard anything like this about her. But I can understand why you'd dig her that much.

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Old 02-21-2011, 09:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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While I've enjoyed much of Radiohead's music, they've never really shown a huge progression. The people that thought they progressed into something eccentric or innovative when they started the electronic infusion were just less educated on a wide array of music.
There's a difference between progression and innovation. Just because Radiohead wasn't necessarily the first artist to explore certain styles doesn't mean that the band didn't grow or move forward on its own evolutionary path. There's definitely a jump between OK Computer and Kid A (I'm referring to distance from conventional pop music rather than quality).

Quote:
Most of what is mentioned in the original post is essentially what I'd expect from Radiohead. Maybe after this album, you too have grown to expect what they give.
That's rather unfair, and illogical too, I must say. The fact that I consider The King of Limbs a bit of a dud doesn't detract from Radiohead's previous work, much of which is brilliant. Hail to the Thief was No. 3 on my personal list of favorite rock albums of the last decade; that judgment is not affected by whatever the band happens to be doing in 2011.

Quote:
With that, I will probably purchase a hard copy (vinyl) if/when it is released. I can wait, but I'm sure I'll be listening to mp3s this week.
You can preorder vinyl now; it will be a fancy (and expensive) release consisting of two 10" records and deluxe packaging.

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Lol at "PJ Harvey, the greatest female rocker of all time..." I dig her for sure.. this is just the first time I've read/heard anything like this about her. But I can understand why you'd dig her that much.
The fact that you haven't encountered that description of PJ Harvey previously is evidence of how severely undervalued she has been. By "rocker," I mean rocker -- not mere pop singer, soul/r&b diva, or glamorous frontwoman. There have been very few women in rock history who bring to the table everything that PJ Harvey does: produces great music, writes her own songs, plays cool guitar, leads the band, sings impressively, and rocks ferociously. The only close competition in the form of a single woman (rather than a duo or group), IMO, is Chrissie Hynde. Unfortunately for my taste, PJ has become a bit too much of a gothic aesthete in the last five years, but most great rockers eventually cool off.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Haha, you've a bit of a defensive tone. I'm not knocking them and I didn't say that they "didn't progress" but rather there was no huge progression. I really dig them...

But songs like Fake Plastic Trees are my favorite "kinds" of songs from them.

I'll let you know what I think of the album.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:56 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Not enough new songs...I feel less than satisfied.

Great album!!, but.....
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Oh, and this means they might tour...good news.
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