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Radiohead

Kid A: Special Collectors Edition

Capitol

Nov 03, 2009 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Capitol gives Radiohead the reissue treatment on Kid A, Amnesiac, and Hail to the Thief, which should come as no surprise given the band’s stature and the current state of the music industry. There’s no question that this is a money grab, but whether it’s one that benefits the consumer depends on what they’ve found in the vaults to bolster albums that most people already own and don’t have much to gain from remastering or remixing.

Kid A is a particularly harsh environment. Released in 2000 as a shot over the bow of a new century, the warm notes of “Everything in its Right Place” restructured what was possible in pop music, much as the band had with OK Computer. Kid A cemented Radiohead’s place in the smallest of rock rooms; if the Hall of Fame had a Hall of Fame, surely Radiohead belonged.

A perfectly balanced, meticulously recorded record full of pathos and emotion that still makes a new sonic statement, Kid A stands as perhaps the finest record this decade. That perfection makes the kind of leftovers that usually stock such reissues difficult to come by, and so Capitol instead chose to include live performances. They are gorgeous. “Morning Bell” takes on an even more sinister tone, like a Stanley Kubrick movie put into sound. “How to Disappear Completely” varies slightly in the three versions presented in this package, with the BBC Radio One take dialing up the anxiety with squealing backing notes, and the Canal + Studios performance emphasizing more of the humanity with its acoustic guitar emphasis.

How much Radiohead is able to bring to the stage is mind-boggling; what would usually seem like studio trickery instead feels organic and feeds into the band’s constant tension between what is real, what is imitation, what is alive, and what is other. It’s defining this other that seems to appeal to the band most, and what drove Kid A to such ecstatic heights. (www.radiohead.com)

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Valencia guy
November 3rd 2009
10:41pm

So that album is really cool - the best one by that team to my mind!

3DChris
November 3rd 2009
11:21pm

Wow, they’re only re-releasing the albums where Radiohead started to sound like they’re writing songs while on drugs. Interesting. I still think that what made Radiohead great in the first place, for example the presence of 3 guitars, was completely lost after OK Computer which is very sad. But if all the people that will be jumping on the re-release bandwagon miss out on some of their best, early work - fine by me. Their loss.
And yes, I realize that everyone will hate me for this comment :)

Hungary
January 7th 2010
11:08pm

Strongly recommend as it is the best album of the really gorgeous team ever!=)

Alcander
February 12th 2010
9:29pm

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