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They’ve been hinting at this their entire career – well, ever since “Airbag”. And now, it’s finally coming to fruition: Radiohead is getting (pause for effect) funky.
Radiohead have experimented with rhythm structures before on songs like “Idioteque”, the aforementioned “Airbag”, and “The Gloaming”, but now they’ve expanded their experiments to a full-length album. The good thing is that it sounds completely different from any of their previous albums and it points in a very interesting direction for their future.
It’s almost safe to call this Radiohead’s jungle album because most of the songs place emphasis on Colin Greenwood’s bass and Phil Selway’s drumming, and they really shine on this album, especially on “Bloom” and “Separator”. There’s also a lot of electronic instrumentation too, particularly on “Lotus Flower” and the album’s defining track, “Feral”.
With the release of this album, as well as songs like “Staircase” and the upcoming remix album, TKOL 1234567, will Radiohead start making funkier, more rhythmically complex music along the lines of Can and Talking Heads? Or will they stick to the more melodic stuff we know and love them for, as suggested by “The Daily Mail” and the two most beautiful songs on Limbs: “Codex” and “Give Up the Ghost”? Either way, this album goes to show that Radiohead is still a band worth paying attention to.