Review: Radiohead – In Rainbows (Part 2)

Radiohead – In Rainbows

A few days ago I wrote a review of Radiohead’s new album In Rainbows. Since then I’ve listened to it at least half a dozen times, and much though it pains me to say it:

I was wrong.

This is a great album; a soothing, joyous, mellow-tinged collection of wondrousness. I’d stand by my initial diagnosis that it isn’t up there with OK Computer or The Bends, but it is in my opinion streets ahead of Kid A, which was far to esoteric for it’s own good.

On In Rainbows Radiohead seem to have come full circle, melding the solid straight-up rock of their earlier stuff (Bodysnatchers is such a tune) with their weird and wonderful noise-influenced recent period. Tracks such as Nude and Weird Fishes/Arpeggi wash over you in waves of melancholy the like we’ve not heard since the heady days of OK Computer.

In my previous review I was a little disparaging about Faust Arp, which I compared to Turin Brakes gone wrong. Well, I’m the one who is wrong (and it’s not often I say that). On repeated listenings I hear Bob Dylan, even echoes of Simon and Garfunkel. This is a modern folk song done in a way only Radiohead can.

The wonderful guitar on the opener 15 Step (would you believe, music buffs, it’s just 1-4-5 in Dorian mode? How come they make it sound so good?). The plaintive longing of All I Need. The rhythmic guitar counterpoint of Weird Fishes/Arpeggi. I could go on, but there’s no need.

This is a great album, in my opinion their best after the Big Two mentioned above. If you listened once and wrote it off, force yourself to listen again a few times (even just to Weird Fishes/Arpeggi and Bodysnatchers) to let it get into your head. You may find, like me, you’ll become addicted to the new Radiohead.

Reviewed by Chris Taylor, October 13th, 2007. This review is marked up using hReview, because I’m all Web 2.0, baby.

4 Responses to “Review: Radiohead – In Rainbows (Part 2)”

  1. Arctic Fox

    I’m glad you like it.

    I’m also glad you think it would be worth forty quid!!

    I still think, if you were prepared to leech it from their website for the princely sum of “nowt” that it’s possibly the biggest turnaround in history!!

    I don’t think any physical copy of a music disc is worth forty quid though!!

    I WILL however concede, that what they have done with the downloading concept and “pay what you like” theory, is revolutionary, and I applaud them for that…….

    Surely the price of the physical copy is merely propping up the internet download losses and as such detracts from their revolutionary concept though?

  2. chris

    I don’t think any physical copy of a music disc is worth forty quid though!!

    This ain’t just a CD< though. It's a CD *and* vinyl copy, extra tracks, and artwork. I can't find the original source for those details, but it's certainly a deluxe package. And, let's face it, Radiohead are about as close to being my favourite band ever as anyone is likely to get.