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Radiohead - The King Of Limbs CD (album) cover

THE KING OF LIMBS

Radiohead

 

Crossover Prog

3.28 | 329 ratings

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Hence4th
5 stars After witnessing the reaction this album has elicited from all manner of music publications, I have never been more convinced of the mass public's inability to understand Radiohead. If you're still cornering the debate into whether or not Radiohead have gone "electronic", you're late to the party (Even a decade ago, that was an oversimplification of Radiohead's progression.) More than ever, that argument are irrelevant here, and as the band themselves have indicated, they're on a big move; both musically and distributively. Yes, it's become quite clear that there's going to be more of this release. Maybe quite a bit more.

But, regardless of how this album evolves over time, these eight tracks are to be considered together.

Well to be blunt, here is a collection of songs so proficiently and confidently crafted, it simply boggles the mind. The band has been together, with their producer, for nearly 20 years. That's triple the time Genesis was around. (The real Genesis.)

Radiohead generally carry bits and pieces from their previous work with them forever. Somehow, somewhere in the mix, this is the same band that made The Bends, (as well as all of their albums) It's just that so many layers have been added, it's nearly vanished beneath the symphonic, avant-garde, percussive, ambient jazz group that emerged at the turn of the century. So it's always interesting to see what they retain, as well as what they abandon.

The most evident departure is from the compulsion they've indulged since their first hit single. You know, the compulsion to crescendo each song to a breaking point, a massive blissful place where all the sonic elements converge.

Yeah, that's gone. (Sort of.)

This is the least anthemic album they've ever made.

Instead we have sonic weaving over the most propulsive and complicated rhythmic structures they've ever produced. The band retains the sense of freedom and confidence of In Rainbows, as well as that albums impression that each song was really being played by the members of the group, in real time. Especially Phil Selway, who may now finally be regarded as the best drummer since Phil Collins finale on Cinema Show.

But, in the end, apart from all of the distant, beautiful, rapturous sounds you'll be hearing,(If you listen) the bottom line here is the almost spiritual emotional effect this album will have on people, just as each of Radiohead album has thus far. This is the band wandering into nature, and contemplating our place within it. There is amazing naturalistic beauty here: allusions to tribal dances, birds, the moon, pools of water, and flowers. Thom has graduated another vocal level (as has the rest of the group) providing delicate and powerful vocals. The other pillar of the group, one Johnny Greenwood, has become a specter, no doubt responsible for the numerous orchestral moments found here.

Above all else, this is something to be cherished, and I implore you, if you are amongst those people who simple hate anything Radiohead related, or if you were somehow inclined to be disappointed by this album, keep listening. It's full of treasure to reward you. Join us!

Hence4th | 5/5 |

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