It’s rare for Radiohead to release an album without some considerable fanfare, and King of Limbs has proved no different. But let’s cut to the chase: the reason Radiohead are still so popular has less to do with the way they stick two fingers up at the rest of music business by releasing their material unexpectedly and in unexpected ways, and more to do with the fact that it is quite simply just bloody good music.
Bloom is a superb, disjointed, bumpy ride of an appetizer, but the album really kicks in with the luscious, muted guitar riffs of Morning Mr Magpie. The sense of anticipation that this track builds is incredible, but I can’t quite decide if it’s a good thing or not that Radiohead are subtler than I would be, and never really let the beasts on the album cover attack. Perhaps the limbs are being saved for the live experience?
Lotus Flower is Radiohead at their most mellifluous and optimistic. Their touch is light and addictive, and the track really flows. The drums are quite intoxicating in the way they just keep rolling along with such a simple but beautiful bass line.
I’m not going to get to the end of the album in this review, just as it took me about an hour and a half to get there first time round because I had to listen to Codex so many times before I felt I could move on. It is THAT good. Yes, I’d love to hear the track remixed by Burial andDiplo and whichever other dubstep or post-dubstep or whatever artist you’d care to mention. But the talk of Radiohead in the post-dubstep world is missing the point, I believe.
There are connections, true. But ultimately Radiohead are great songwriters who produce overwhelmingly beautiful melodies and loops, be they for the vocals, guitar, bass or of the more bleepy squelchy electronic variety.
Their King of Limbs doesn’t take a great and innovative leap into the unknown. It is pretty creative, yes. But it is not truly groundbreaking in the same way Kid A grabbed you and shook you by the shoulders and really made you reassess what creativity in music meant.
But do we like it? Yes we do. And some.
Artist page on ITUNES (US) :
Buy from ITUNES (UK) :
Want to check it out first? Try it on Soundcloud :
Radiohead - The King of Limbs by ThePEAK
WORDS: AC 24/7