Friday 3 June 2016

Spinning: Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool

You must have been living under a rock if the news about Radiohead's new album A Moon Shaped Pool didn't reach you. An immense buzz surrounded the rumours about new music and when it was finally announced together with a tour, the internet exploded. Now you can even get a bit tired of all the Radiohead news when music news sources seem to bring you every small detail as headline. Of course all critics wanted to get their reviews out fast and couldn't stop raving about the new LP. So is it really that good?

With this band you know that they are probably the most favourite group of the whole alternative music scene, if that is a thing, and can make you a bit sceptic. Noel Gallagher said: "If Thom Yorke fucking shit into a light'd get 9/10" and it seems that's not too far from the truth. But when you listen to the new record, you know he didn't shit in a light bulb at all, since it's stuffed with wonderful music.

All the critics are simply right this time. Right from the start with album opener 'Burn The Witch' you kind of know they did it again and delivered a master piece. The lush strings that we hear in it are the common thread running through the album. In general the arrangements are simply beautiful and well thought through. Every song gets exactly what it needs. The guitar and stylish drums in 'Present Tense', the piano and strings in the sad 'Glass Eyes', it's all spot on.

Like 'Burn The Witch', some songs did already pop up years before and simply took a long time to finish. The band played 'Ful Stop' before and now made it onto the record with it's buzzing bass. And all the time there's the fragile voice of Thom Yorke, creating this scenic slightly melancholic world like on 'Daydreaming'. 'The Numbers' may be one of the best songs Radiohead ever came up with. It starts with weird noises and a ringing piano slowly unfolding itself, where halfway the strings kick in until it ends the way it started.

Mostly the record has a melancholic feel to it with some sad moments. It ends this way as well with 'True Love Waits' which is a dark sad song built around piano sounds. People that once loved Radiohead but couldn't follow the direction leaving their rock sound behind, will not really like this album either. But for anyone that can appreciate anything they did from OK Computer and Kid A on, it is possibly their best one since those two illustrious predecessors. Once you start listening you can't stop and it has ended before you know you start playing it again.

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