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Radiohead - Kid A CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.95 | 719 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars When everybody was waiting for a OK Computer II, in a certain belief that Radiohead had found their own charisma (and mainstream success), the band surprisingly not only rejected it but also made a radical transformation on their sound. Kid A shows the sparse experimentations of the predecessor in a complete abstract, opaque expressionism. Guitars were almost entirely abandoned, which upset the crowds, while tracks merely served as brood and tangible archetypes for electronic soundscapes, which worsened even more the scenario. Adding to Thom York's depressive paranoia, atmospheres were also imbued from Kraftwerk's experimental sounds to Klaus Schulze's languid and balanced nuances. The result may not be as revolutionary as many might think, but its aesthetics, this paradoxically comfortable ultra-depressive endless state, was perhaps never embraced so concisely in rock music.

Everything was processed, even voice, giving this effort a very artificial, though sensible, approach. Globally the album flows very naturally, peak points are the enigmatic introspective strangeness of the title track, the blow instruments chaotic explosions of "The National Anthem", the melancholy moan of "Limbo" and the post-dance "Idioteque". "How to Disappear Completely" touches depression in its most dark abyss, while "Morning Bell" and "Optimistic" were the most concise and radio-friendly movements of this expression.

As they refused to give the crowds more of the pills they created with OK Computer (dream rock), and decided to be more and more abstract (when the history proves rock bands move usually the opposite path), a horde of groups leaded by Coldplay had been thankful and made the favor of playing for them. But Kid A was no mistake, its unprecedented strangeness decomposes feelings in a beautiful avant-gard way, which may even be deeper than everything they've done in the past. Of course we can argue others may have done these electronic experiments many years before, and even some (Mark Kozelek) dealt with this antagonistic introspective feeling. But, somehow, after many and many listens, this combo reveals something of its own, something impenetrable and disturbing not experienced before, at least in one form.

TRoTZ | 5/5 |


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