Radiohead’s New Album Satisfies


Earlier this month, the beloved alternative rock band Radiohead – known for Albums like OK Computer and perhaps most famous for their song “Creep” – decided to do something that isolated them from the likes of Beyonce and Drake. They decided to delete everything on every single one of their social media accounts. As fans noticed the unique move, it became clear that new material was on its way, much awaited since the release of their last album in 2011.


Then, on May 3rd, Radiohead released a music video with their new song “Burn The Witch” which is undoubtedly the most disturbing music video by a major artist released this year. It is done entirely in claymation, and it screams darkness and discomfort. Fans rejoiced, because once they are able to stop being distracted by the video’s obscurities, the song itself is terrific.


Then, again unannounced, the band released another song accompanied by a music video just three days later called “Daydreaming” directed by Paul Thomas Anderson of Boogie Nights fame. It features lead singer Thom Yorke walking around, guided by the music’s somber yet relaxing tone, until he stumbles into a snowy cave and lays to rest by a fire, which I personally believe is an homage to a scene from The Revenant. That same day, it was announced that over the weekend, Radiohead would release a surprise new album, “A Moon Shaped Pool”.


Upon its release, I’ve listened to the album several times, because it’s really difficult to form an opinion of it after listening just once. The album is packed with puzzles, between words being said backwards and sequences of notes being played in reverse; all of the songs are in alphabetical order, which is likely not a coincidence. The album consists almost entirely of slow ballads, and the band uses keyboards and musical special effects to create a unique sound.


While “Daydreaming” and “Burn the Witch” are two of the best songs, there are many more. I particularly enjoy “Glass Eyes”, and the last song on the album “True Love Waits” is a real treat because it was written by the band in the 90s. The song was first performed by the band in 1995 and appeared on the live recording album of I Might Be Wrong in 2001, but A Moon Shaped Pool marks the song’s official release.


Upon announcing that “A Moon Shaped Pool” was on its way, Radiohead promised the album would be like nothing we’ve ever heard before. Thus, I have some disappointment with the album, because it is something we’ve heard before. Not only that, it’s something we’ve heard from Radiohead before. The calm, eerie sound, as nice as it is, is nothing new. Ultimately, I already love Radiohead, and so I’m more than happy with A Moon Shaped Pool, because it just serves as – well – another Radiohead Album.
It’s not their best or their most essential – everyone looking to get into Radiohead must listen to Pablo Honey, OK Computer, and Kid A, first. After developing an understanding, and hopefully a penchant for their sound, I would recommend checking out A Moon Shaped Pool. The album is clearly designed for fans, and it couldn’t be more clear that they’re receiving it well. Just click here and you’ll see what I mean.