Customer Review

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Expresses love and humanity in ten songs. From a disconnected viewpoint, obviously, 2 Feb. 2009
This review is from: In Rainbows (Audio CD)
The most startling thing about this album is how warm and human it sounds. The diversity of tracks is also impressive, from the stuttering drum-machine opening of '15 Step' that soon twists into avant-garde, jazz rock funk. 'Bodysnatchers' is a fuzzy freak-out with one of my all-time favourite Radiohead moments where Yorke sings angrily and simply 'I'm a lie'. The soulful ballad 'Nude' that by the end sounds nothing less than transcendant, and the otherworldy dreamscape of 'Weird Fishes/Arpeggi' which is strangely relatable as Yorke croons 'everybody leaves if they get the chance', which I interpreted as meaning leaving your home town or an over-familiar place for something better.

There's the doom-synth, love obsession march of 'All I Need' that is a lamenting ode from someone who loves but is unloved in return. It ends cathartically but ambivalently as Yorke cries 'It's s'alright, it's all wrong'. 'Faust' gracefully rolls along with bizarre lyrics that are very understated but compelling all the same, as a subtle orchestral backing swells and undulates throughout. 'Reckoner' is percussive and beautiful, featuring vocals that don't sound like they were made by a normal human being, sounding as transcendant as those in 'Nude'. The lyrics state that this song is 'dedicated to all human beings' as if Yorke himself isn't actually one but loves us all the same.

'House of Cards' has the most un-Radiohead lyrics I've ever heard, where we're told 'I don't wanna be your friend, I just wanna be your lover'. 'Jigsaw Falling Into Place' is lyrically flowing pure rock with its tale of a bad night out that I'm sure a lot of people could identify with. 'Videotape' is very emotional with its starched and sombre stabbing of the piano keys, the title proving very apt as the Yorke-meister sings about recording footage of happy moments to watch again in the future, 'this is one for the good days' that brings Yorke back to himself, 'You are my centre when I spin away'. The stately sadness is offset by the belief that everything in the end will be okay, 'because I know today has been the most perfect day I have ever seen'.

I can only repeat myself and say how magnificently otherworldly, and yet how down-to-earth it all sounds. The references to 'Doctor Faustus' are interesting, with one of the songs being called 'Faust' and 'Videotape' featuring the lyrics 'Mephistopheles is reaching up to grab me'. Radiohead have earned their place as one of the greatest bands of our generation and probably many more, full stop. I honestly can't wait to see what they come up with next.
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