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Radiohead - Kid A CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.95 | 719 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars I was listening to this and Amnesiac the other day, after a long period, and I was quite impressed. On progarchives there have been many heated debates about the merits of Radiohead, but I have to come down firmly on the "they are prog" side. The reason being that these two records are such obvious homages to Krautrock that the fact can't be avoided. It's plain that these chaps were subsisting on a diet of Faust and Neu! when they conceived Kid A, and it shows. I'm reminded very much of Faust IV in the chaotic nature of the album, with noise experiments, beat-based tunes and odd little songs interspersed throughout. I won't do it track by track, since most of you will have heard this album, I imagine, and you know what I mean. The highlight for me is the moody ballad "How to Disappear Completely", since the tune's elegance sticks out among all the tortured beats and Thom Yorke's usual strangulated wailing on the other tunes. There is also a nice ambient piece, "Treefingers", that impressed me (I am a big ambient fan).

The big differences between this album and its Kraut antecedents are, of course, the greater variety of technological advances available to Radiohead (I imagine most of these sounds were computer-generated), and the fact that humour plays almost no role in Radiohead's music. Kraut bands were known for the jokes and wit of their recordings- they rarely took themselves seriously, whereas Radiohead (and Yorke particulary) are mainly interesed in expressing a very bleak worldview. If you can take the doom and gloom, this is a very satisfying recording of modern rock with a definite influence from the sonic experimenters of the early 70s.

Heptade | 4/5 |


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