Radiohead – “In Rainbows”

It’s sad to say that in the first 16 years of my life I never fully understood the cult obsession of Radiohead. After listening to their latest CD, I have one word to sum up the work of this British band that has been around for more than a decade: genius. “In Rainbows” is simply a well-crafted, amazing album. Every song helps you understand why they are one of greatest bands ever assembled.

“15 Step” starts off the album with an opening of tribal-like beats and claps reminiscent of the band’s futuristic “Idioteque” from “Kid A” (2000). Jonny Greenwood smoothes out the track with his anodyne guitar under Thom Yorke’s smirky lyrics: “You used to be all right, what happened? Did the cat get your tongue?”

After the guitar-dominated track “Bodysnatchers,” the album takes a tranquilizing left turn with “Nude.” Radiohead utilizes their instruments to make a new sound in “Weird Fishes” and “Reckoner.” It also reminds us of simpler times with their slow-paced lyrical songs “All I Need” and “Videotape,” which is so beautiful and simple it almost brings a tear to your eye. I love the line “You are my center when I spin away.”

“In Rainbows” is one of the best albums to come out in the past five years. Even the marketing scheme is pure genius. The band decided to let fans pick the price when they download it from their website. Something as awesome as “In Rainbows” is truly priceless.

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