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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ambitious ... but what's everyone moaning about?
Reviewers should probably start by admitting their bias, and mine is that I loved Kid A. Having I enjoyed Radiohead since Creep and The Bends, I realised with OK Computer that this was not a band content to musically stand still. All of the major artists like The Beatles,Dylan,Bowie etc.have been driven by the urge to explore and, despite the inevitable clunker, emerged...
Published on 30 Sep 2001

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Wierd, but I like it.
Well, the book like thing is a really cool gimmick and I love it, but just where am I going to keep it? In my CD rack? -I think not! And it's well-annoying to get the cd out of it too. I love the art work inside too. But please don't try to find any hidden meaning behind it, you're just kidding yourselves. It's only random gibberish done to give it all a 'wierd'...
Published on 23 Jun 2001 by Mr. Matthew C. Franks


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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ambitious ... but what's everyone moaning about?, 30 Sep 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
Reviewers should probably start by admitting their bias, and mine is that I loved Kid A. Having I enjoyed Radiohead since Creep and The Bends, I realised with OK Computer that this was not a band content to musically stand still. All of the major artists like The Beatles,Dylan,Bowie etc.have been driven by the urge to explore and, despite the inevitable clunker, emerged stronger for it. And, inevitably, their old fans attacked them for it. I find Amnesiac to be a far more melodically accessible album than Kid A, but it only works if you're not expecting more of the stadium rock anthems of yore. Certainly, it's not an album for everyone, but compared to the later work of,say, Autechre or Squarepusher it's actually rather user-friendly given its ambitions. I left one star off because I feel the best work of Radiohead is still to come. But complaining that it doesn't all sound like My Iron Lung is like complaining that I Am The Walrus isn't as good as Please Please Me.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spangdanglytastic!!! Radiohead rule!!!, 23 Jun 2002
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
You don't often listen to music whilst not doing something else. It is a rare occasion when you sit down, and listen to an album. Usually (or at least in my case), listening to albums/music in generall involves working/waking up/sleeping/etc. Amnesiac is perfect for all of these situations, and this is what I want an album for.
Every song is worthwhile on this album. 'Packt...' opens the album broodingly;a repetitive beat evolves into subtle keyboards and delicate vocals, followed by the 'I'm a reasonable man...' catch-line. Amnesiac begins where it means to carry on;quiet, mysterious and thoroughly enthralling.
The defining moment of this album is the opening to 'Pyramid Song'. Subdued piano blends with growing haunting vocals set the tone for this magnificent, immense song. Later in the track, drums, guitars and violins create a cacophony of sound, arousing the senses whatever you are doing. 'Pulk/Pull Revolving Doors' is easily the worst track on the album, ruining the atmosphere created by the previous track. However, its ugly muffled vocals do mix with the gritty music, and although some pretentious critics say 'Pulk/Pull...' is only worthwhile listened to as a 'thing', its musical values do grow. Not great, but not as bad as most say.
'You and Whose Army?' begins as a sunny sunday morning, and ends as a slow sunday evening lament, with a sad centre. 'I Might Be Wrong' is my favourite track, reminding me of my favourite track of all time(Idioteque on Kid A). The excellent choppy riff builds and builds with Thom Yorke's fuzzy lyrics, climaxing in a tear-jerking guitar solo. 'I Might Be Wrong' is my favourite track on Amnesiac.
'Knives Out' dissapoints slightly, as it begins so well, yet stays there. Don't get me wrong, I love this track, yet I feel it could have been better. The Amnesiac version of 'Morning Bell' is the antithesis of the Kid A version. The lighter arrangements are better for groggy sunday mornings than the original for sure!
The final four tracks bring Amnesiac to a close moodily. Despite 'Dollars and Cents' obscure lyrics, it is a stunning piece. Fitful guitars and an array of other instruments combine well to create another haunting Radiohead classic. 'Hunting Bears' is the defintion of pretentiousness, but I do like it. The unremarkable guitar work does benefit from some crafty production and occasional perfectly placed chord. 'Like Spinning Plates' is confusing to begin with, yet grows with time, and the final track is a real gem. Expecting a moody pessimistic finale to the album, 'Life In a Glass House' throws the listener into a delightful and peculiar jazzy world. Humphrey Lyttleton and his merry band of musicians provide inspiration to Radiohead, with Yorke finally coming out of his shell to sing properly for the first time in two spectacular albums.
Everybody knew Radiohead were the best band in the world after Pablo Honey, THe Bends, OK computer and (my favourite)Kid A, now everybody knows they are the best band in the universe. And don't let some dwarf-like green man tell you otherwise.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Part 2 of the great musical revolution: Amnesiac by Radiohead (2001)., 17 Jun 2006
By 
S. Neville "Anon" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
If any Radiohead album epitimises the great music transition made at the turn of the millenium, 'Amnesiac' is it. Pre-2000 Radiohead was a totally different beast to the 21st century version, and this change in style, attitude and imagination is evident through their fifth studio album. The experimental nature of the disc was revolutionary at the time and proved Radiohead were no ordinary alternative rock band; they had the musical inovation required to create an album as unique and influential as Sgt. Peppers.

'Amnesiac' remains a lynchpin of their live act, not in the numerical sense, but in the way that the most moving memorable songs in the set were from the record. I recently saw them live at the Hammersmith Apollo and tracks from the album played a big part. The concert began with the sensationally moving 'You and Whose Army'. We were immersed in darkness and the beautiful piano and thickened vocals cut through me like a smooth feather. My spine tingled with excitement and I almost began to well up with emotion. Later in the set the jaunty bounce of 'Dollars and Cents' elated the crowd as Thom Yorke's dramatic (and often disturbing) lyrics sent waves of tension and angst throughout the audience. Although the album featured no more from Amnesiac, it could have done.

For example, the fantastic 'Pyramid Song', a similarly dramatic track to 'You and Whose Army', could well have played a huge part in the act, mainly due to its captivating emotion. 'I Might Be Wrong' and the truly superb guitar fuelled 'Knives Out' are also memorable songs adding great depth to the album.

'Amnesiac' however is an experimental, electronic album, so songs such as 'Packt Like Sardines in a Crushd Can' and the jazz-fusion 'Life In A Glasshouse' require a particularly acquired taste. The backward sense insued by 'Like Spinning Plates' is often regarded as a high point of Amnesiac due its totally unique nature. The pain and anguish expressed in Thom Yorke's vocals are an amazingly physical feeling, and as Yorke wails 'It feels just like spinning plates' listeners everywhere feel (apart from slight confusion) a tragic sympathy towards Thom, whatever his problem may be. Elsewhere, the industrial dance track 'Pulk/Pull Revolving Doors' is a particularly strange point of Amnesiac, but still a fascinating one; the instrumental interlude 'Hunting Bears' gives off an ominous sense of well being; as does the slightly merrier version of 'Kid A's' 'Morning Bell'.

The imagination required to make such an amazingly unusual album as 'Amnesiac' is beyond belief. Radiohead surpassed so many expectations, defied so many critics, and often worried many fans due to their total betrayel of commercial success and guitar bassed indie music; and all to provide an extra depth to the music scene and widen the musical poriphoral. Not many can argue that Radiohead are consequently a vital aspect of music history and a fantastic band, and should be remembered for a very long time.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amnesiac, 18 May 2006
By 
R. M. Williams "stella" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
The popular misconception of this album is that it's just made up of Kid A cast-offs. But that is simply not the case. Many consider this radioheads finest body of work even though its not as critically acclaimed as Kid A.

Personally this is my favourite Radiohead longplayer. Pyramid Song, You And Whose Army?, I Might Be Wrong, Like Spinning Plates and Life In A Glasshouse being particular highlights..

The album feels more listenable and complete than Kid A, while still offerring some great electro-experimental moments- the industrially tinged Pulk/Pull Revolving Doors being one of my favourites.

If you like Kid A or Hail To The Theif you need this recording. ignore whatever is said about it.

And if you like this - i highly recommend I Might Be Wrong: Live Recordings. For a particularly heart-felt rendition of Like Spinning Plates and stunning bside 'True Love Waits'
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kid B? No Amnesiac, 30 Oct 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
This record was made alongside Kid A, so the comparisoms are inevitable. However there is a reason Kid A isn't just one, longer album, and that is the only track here that would have fit on Kid A, and that is Pulk/Push Revolving doors.
So anyway, as with its predeccessor, don't jump to conclusions. Amnesiac is deep and many dimensional, and these things take time to explore but well worth exploring. Begining very strongly with a creep-o-matic's nightmare, Packt like Sardines in a Crushd Tin Box combines dodgy beats with a beautiful electric piano and Thom's tuneful mutterings. Pyramid song needs no introduction as the most beautiful single this year, nor does the haunting guitar line and melody of Knives Out, a reminder of the Radiohead of OK Computer days.
Other highlights are the wonderful I might be wrong, You and Whose Army? and best of all Life in a Glasshouse, Jazz with a difference. The one dissapointment for me is Morning Bell, you just think why? The Kid A arrangment is much better, and I want to hear new Radiohead songs.
Anyway, Radiohead fans will have already bought it, so to everyone else who likes their rock acts to be different, Go buy!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trap doors that open, 11 Dec 2006
By 
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
Pulk/pull Revolving Doors summed this album up when I first heard it. Dark, dense, atonal, full of dissonance. I thought, "Well let's skip this and put it down to "uptheirownbacksideness"". I'd always considered this album started at "I Might Be Wrong" and the second part of this album welded on to the first five tracks of Kid A would have been a better move.

However, having put together quite a few playlists on the old i-pod, I noticed that I was always including far more tracks from Amnesiac than any of the other albums. Recently therefore I thought it might be worth playing the whole album through one more time. This was after not listening to any Radiohead at all for quite some time.

"...

And there are revolving doors.

There are doors that open by themselves.

There are sliding doors and there are secret doors.

There are doors that lock and doors that don't.

There are doors that let you in and out but never exit.

But there are trap doors that you can't come back from."

- Pulk/pull Revolving Doors

I couldn't put it better myself. I seem to have slipped through that trap door that you can't come back from. This is simply an astonishing piece of work coming from the limitations of a five member rock group.

There are legions of music lovers who put The Bends and OK Computer in their top ten. There are lesser numbers who recognise Kid A as the improvement that it is. But I have a feeling in years to come that more and more will unlock the mechanisms in this little puzzle, and recognise "their secret album" for what it is. Their masterpiece.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The EXTRA tracks from Kid A are actually better!, 31 May 2003
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
On Kid A Radiohead showed the world that they are more than just one the most talented bands at the moment, that there is also an innovative side that can only class them as genius, and obviously the best band to come out of Britain in a long time.
Kid A was a huge step from OK Computer, and even though many of the critics didn't really like it (what do they know), it was still brilliant.
Amnesiac (tracks recorded at the same time as Kid A) shows this again, but with more guitar this time. But those of you epecting epic songs and long guitar solos look away now.
The range of songs on offer are great from the beautiful "Pyramid Song" to the wierdness that is "Like spinning plates". The opening track "Packt like sardines in a crushd tin box" has a large range of instuments and effects, demonstrating the ability of each band member.
The one song that is more like a typical Radiohead song is "Knives Out" which sees the band using the three guitar system that was evident on the previous albums, and the dark lyrics that Thom sings often "Catch the mouse/Squash his head/Throw him in the pot". Nice image.
The only downside is "Morning Bell/Amnesiac". One of the best songs from Kid A loses the flair that made the original good, this time it is too slow and a bit crap without the great guitar ending. But it is still good, mind.
It is also nice too see the band trying out some new styles ("Life in a Glasshouse").
A nice highlight is "Dollars and cents" which has some great moments, such the build up (the "why don't you quiet down" bit) and then the drums explode before going silent again.
What Radiohead have created however are songs that will be forever used on adverts. How many times have you heard a Radiohead song on an advert or TV programme? I think the list is endless.
Overall, buy this album if you want to discover a great band or have an open mind.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nine out of ten Helens agree...., 30 May 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
Amnesiac IS the album of 2001. Packed like 11 completely touching movements in a crafty mid/tempo box, it's got enough smart hooks to survive in your mind long after the first few spins. It's got 'legs' as they say. And I can't remember a time since first hearing 'Ok' where the vocals stirred up so much raw emotion as they do here. Put on the stereo headphones, listen for all the myriad sounds playing through every track. Close your eyes and the stories told here will dazzle you. But that's the poetic side of the cd talking.
Got Singles? Yes. 'Amnesiac' is like taking everything, or anything you liked about 'Kid A', and lightly sprinkling it evenly throughout 'Ok Computer'. And man is it catchy.
But of course I disliked 'Kid A' immensely upon the first many listens. "Where are the loud distorted guitars"? "Where are the vocals"? Only to soon realize how to open up and take it for what it is, art. Not a collection of radio friendly singles but akin to a beautiful painting or a striking classical movement. 'Amnesiac' feels like more of the same. Though a bit more accessible and 'radio friendly', can still be felt front to back as one long piece of art without your mind segregating the tracks. A ride if you will. And what a ride it is.
Take some time for this one because once you get into it, it's live emotions. The vocals stop you and the music moves you. Leaving you with a sense of not knowing what you've been through. But I'm sure I enjoyed the ride.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beyond Style., 18 April 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
I have been a Radiohead fan ever since I first heard Stop Whispering back in 1993. I was not really hooked before I heard My Iron Lung. But even though I really liked the band I thought something was wrong for a long time. Tracks like Bones, Nice Dream, Bullet proof & Black Star from the Bends seemed not quite to work out. I had this feeling that the band was still only "promising." With OK Computer the band finally perfected their style. I had the feeling that this could be the last album they would record. As shown by Ed's diary this was a real danger. KID A was a wierd experience at first. The style was drifting and the space in which it was moving, was so cold. It was only after I learned to play some of the songs myself, that I got the idea. Some of my friends never understood anything of this recond. A shame, it is a truly great record. Still Amnesiac sets out to be even better. It is more positive than all the other albums and the negative songs are aggressive instead of depressive. Surely an improvement. Occasionally one can miss the excellent lyrics of OK Computer, but there are still some great moments, like in Pyramid Song (which might be their first really big hit since Creep. Only Karme Poilice was close.) where Thom sings of "the moon full of stars and astral cars." When I write that this record is beyond style I mean it. It has Jazz-elements, rock, pop and techno-songs. My own favorites are (currently) Dollars and Cents and You and Whose Army. But also the rerecording of Morning Bell is beautiful beyond words. But basically most of the record is.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another very personal album from Radiohead!, 6 Jun 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
This album is, as expected, very good. But, I am not writing this review on the album but on the Ltd Edition part of it. The package arrived this morning and immediately I took it upstairs and opened it. I saw A red book with a weeping devil bear thing sitting down. And most of all the satisfaction of finally, after all the waiting, seeing the words AMNESAIC RADIOHEAD printed on something that wasn't a bootlegged CD. I opened the book and carefully placed the CD in my Hi Fi and sat back and leafed through the rest of the book. I am an art student and a rebelious one at that and all I ever want to do is create images like the ones in the ltd edition, I mean images that have no meaning to anyone except me and people like me. That is what they have accomplished with this book. These images seem so pointless and irrelevent when taken at face value, just like Ok COmputer and Kid A sleeves but delv a little deeper and you can see how it relates to everything the band stands for. Politics and many other issues. If you find yourself not understanding any of these images just look at the radiohead website and all the causes the band supports. Another aspect of the images is they seem to relate somewhat to Tolkein. Strange creatures and evil looking landscapes are everywhere. If you have any further doubts about the artwork in this cd/book just think of all the other bands currently releasing stuff and look at how much personal effort has gone into producing their sleeves, none!
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