Radiohead, Anyone?

April 3, 2009 · 3 comments

For some reason, I’ve always associated the music of Radiohead with sociopaths.  I couldn’t tell you why – probably something to do with my ex-wife, but that’s a long story for another post.

I own a Kid Rock (and the Twisted Brown Trucker Band) live album that has a line that goes “…f*ck Clay Aiken and Radiohead…”, and I’ve always made a fist and gone ‘yeah!’ upon hearing it.

So I was noteably skeptical when my friend Fernando suggested that I listen to Radiohead.  Fernando, however, is in my opinion one of the smartest people I’ve come across in a long time.  So when he makes a suggestion, I listen.  His suggestion was to obtain and listen to Kid A (2000) and Amnesiac (2001) first.  I hit up Amazon.com and purchased both albums – which arrived surprisingly early, I might add (must be their slow season).

I popped Kid A into my car stereo a couple of days ago and have listened to the album through about 4 or 5 times.  I’m pretty sure this album was in the jukebox of a few bars I’d spent some time in, as well as the stereos of some of the heavy-stoners I’ve spent some time with.  It was not unfamiliar.  Amnesiac went into my stereo at home.  Totally different experiences for me this time, as I have been listening to this album for the last couple of days sans drug-, crowd, and/or booze-induced retardation.  Under those circumstances, I really didn’t like Radiohead.

There are parts of Kid A that I kind of dig, notably Track 3 (The National Anthem).  Something about Radiohead reminds me of Medesky, Martin & Wood – but Radiohead at least has consistent beats.  I’ve turned the volume way up, in the hopes that I can get into a kind of club-mentality, but I don’t think it’s really that kind of music.  It’s like a very diluted version of the kind of techno I enjoy – slower and softer. 

I’ve been through Amnesiac twice at home and can’t really say anything good or bad about it – it just hasn’t been memorable one way or the other for me.  Yet.  I’ll keep listening and try to acquire a taste for it.

For now, all I can say is that I’m keeping an open mind and that the jury’s still out on both albums.  Hail to the Thief (2003) and In Rainbows (2007) are next on the docket, and I may get those sooner rather than later, in the hopes that they’re more to my (albeit relatively eclectic) taste than what I’ve heard so far.  Maybe I should read the Wikipedia articles in this post as well.

All that said, I’m also (at the moment) listening to A Metal Tribute to Metallica – specifically the rendition of Battery by Pagandom (here’s another link).  Holy shiznit, it’s incredible.  Probably one of the best covers of any song I’ve ever heard.  Really tight and to the point. 

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

suz April 3, 2009 at 11:01

It took me years to appreciate and enjoy Radiohead…. though I still wouldn’t necessarily call myself a fan. It was big among my friends in college and I pronounced it (not proud of this) to anyone that would listen as, Music to kill yourself to. Fast forward several years to a different time in my life and I’ve found that while that sentiment still holds some truth, Radiohead has songs that can give a simultaneous high and low like nobody’s business… you’re so high it makes you want to cry. Listen to OK Computer and The Bends. I don’t know really know their others so well (hence, not a “fan”). I can burn them for you if you want…

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Tomers April 4, 2009 at 21:34

I love ’em. A friend of mine recommended OK Computer to me years ago, but it wasn’t until proably 2 years later that I came to appreciate that album. The Bends is good too, but it’s less free-form than their later stuff. From OK Computer onward, I seem to like their stuff more and more. In Rainbows, their latest, is my favorite. I often listen to Radiohead while I’m working. I have a playlist of The Bends, OK Computer , Kid A, and In Rainbows and I put it on shuffle/repeat and listen to it all day. My favorite song of the moment is “All I Need” off of In Rainbows.

Don’t force it. If you don’t like it, you don’t like it. So what.

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Didi April 6, 2009 at 07:43

First things first… you were married??

Next thing… Radiohead IS the SHIZNIT! :D

OK Computer is one of the best albums ever made, whether or not you like Radiohead. It’s also their best album. Everything else after that is a little wanky and self-indulgent. In Rainbows is also pretty brilliant, but I have a lot of memories tied up with OK Computer which is probably why it will remain on my “Top 3 Albums to Bury Me With”… until the day I die.

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