This review is from: Amnesiac (Audio CD)
Thom Yorke once described Kid A as watching the fire from the distance and Amnesiac as being caught in the flames. In this latter album he is burning, yet soaring with lines like "Why can't angels swim with me", muttering "I'm a reasonable man get off my case", his life is "like spinning plates", he recounts "i might be wrong, but could have swore i saw a light go out", and "of course i'd like to sit and chew the fat, but someone's listening in"... these are the lines of the flames. And a wonderfully brilliant fire it is too.
These are the classic and formidable postscripts to the disillusion and melancholy Radiohead captured so world-changingly in OK Computer, the modern office-bound human, preened on vitamins and running machines "like a cat tied to a stick", the captured tragic hero, fatally undermined by the unreality of his reality.
Elegiac, a nice word, means "expressing sorrow often for something now past". It's also a spot on word to describe what this amazing album does now. Amnesiac, a forgetting of pain and inconsistencies and a remembering of the past of youth and promise, destroyed by encounters with the adult real.
Amnesiac, is a remarkable album and a truly worthy companion to, for me, the album of the decade, Kid A. As such, it is often unfairly forgotten next to its brilliant neighbour. However, Radiohead have not come close to the brilliance in this album since, not to mention its three predecessors, except in a handful of tracks.