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Radiohead - Kid A CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.94 | 769 ratings

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Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer
3 stars I've always kind of dreaded reviewing Radiohead albums, mostly because I hear and acknowledge the artistry that the group puts into each of their releases, but it never really registers for me. Most people in my demographic enjoy Radiohead because their first encounter with the band was some sort of revelation that opened their ears to what artistic music could be. I was already deep into Yes, King Crimson, and other prog groups, so when I heard people say, "oh man you've GOT to listen to Radiohead! They're so inventive..." I immediately thought "screw you, I'm listening to a 20 minute song about transcendentalism and the flourishing of the human spirit." At any rate, its seems that one cannot be a fan of art rock without exposing oneself to Radiohead, so here we go.

I feel that Kid A is basically ambient/trance music with the occasional guitar noise and drums thrown in. Radiohead has composed a series of languid, synth-heavy songs that ebb and flow through rhythm and melancholy. The musicianship is one of subtlety and craftsmanship, creating generally moody emotions in abstract structures. There isn't a single chorus, hook, or melody that is likely to stick with the listener, but the general feeling while listening is generally quite pleasant, even if you can't really pick out what you like about it. The album feels very lazy and at times is even trance-inducing, but if you listen closer you'll actually hear quite a bit going on. I suppose for me I enjoy Kid A as sort of "avant garde light". It's crazy enough to be a weird and artistic experience, but not TOO weird and artistic as to be inaccessible. This is probably why Radiohead was so successful; they invented and created something that was just weird enough to still be popular.

As a rock album I think that Radiohead's performance on Kid A is underwhelming and forgettable. As a piece of experimental art, I think it's pretty good; however, it will definitely appeal to some much more than others, and probably for different reasons.

Songwriting: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Lyrics/Vocals: 2 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

Prog Leviathan | 3/5 |


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