our score: 5.0 out of 5.0
buy it: here
Happier. More Productive.
is Radiohead's third album since their debut with Pablo Honey,
and boy have they progressed through the years. It is no
wonder they were nominated for the 1998 Grammy Award for Album
Of The Year and won the 1998 Grammy for Best Alternative Music
Performance with this album. Imagine, a rock band... a great
rock band. They go forward into the realm of techno/electronica
without sacrificing their instruments. Instead they get the desired
effects with the guitars and bass and drums, as well as adding
a hint of synthesizer and sound effect samples. This album
is where music is headed, and there is no better band to lead
the way than Radiohead.
my above description, it may sound like just a techno album, that
is not the case. It is firmly grounded in rock. There
is no techno beat or overuse of samplers - these are merely added
for effect in a few spots on the album. The majority of
the electronic sound is from the style in which the guitar is
played. Thom Yorke's voice is a haunting, mysterious one,
that fits Radiohead's musical style to a T. This is one
band in which the greatness of the music lies not in just one
single member, nor with the entire band. Instead what we
have here is each single member, working together with a certain
texture, to achieve a climax of musical piety, with Thom Yorke's
cracked-throat voice in the center of it all.
on the album are not all your basic 4-minute pop rock tunes like
those being pumped out by the rest of the music industry currently.
"Paranoid Android", the first single from the album
(you may remember the music video with the little cartoon), is
an epic musical masterpiece. It includes tempo changes,
mood changes, wild (but not gross) shifts in dynamics, all topped
off with the fits of anger and melancholic depression we can expect
from singer Thom Yorke. This song in itself is a modern
symphony. These days, it is difficult to find all of the
aforementioned styles on one cd, let alone one song. Better
yet, Radiohead succeeds in pulling it off beautifully in just
over 6 minutes. Keep in mind, this is just one song on the
album - there is an another 47 minutes to go.
through the album we are greeted with an eerie track which probes
the value of our lives and where we place our values. This
track, "Fitter Happier", includes no actual vocals,
but instead a computer voice reading off phrases over a piano
led background track. It ends with this phrase "fitter,
happier, and more productive. a pig, in a cage, on antibiotics".
are directed towards a a look at the future. Not only in
the musical sense, but in a philosophical style as well.
He delves into the minds of the listener, grips their psyche,
and questions its worth before moving onto his next patient -
himself. This is done in a less-straitforward, more artistic
style which Yorke excels at. It makes the listener think,
and the meaning behind them relies on the listener above all else.
liked OK Computer...
2. Paranoid Android
3. Subterranean Homesick Alien
4. Exit Music (For a Film)
5. Let Down
6. Karma Police
7. Fitter Happier
9. Climbing Up the Walls
10. No Surprises
12. The Tourist