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First Glance at Radiohead’s In Rainbow

inrainbow

I was in the middle of reading some websites when I got the email notification at 10:50pm tonight that Radiohead‘s new album “In Rainbows” was ready for download. I almost jumped out of my skin trying to switch over to mail and hit the special “UNIQUE DOWNLOAD ACTIVATION CODE” link embedded in the mass email. It instantly starting downloading the new album to my desktop as promised. The file is 48.4 mb ten tracks and all are DRM free MP3’s.

It is rare that I get this excited about something, and this is the second time this week for me!I am now on track 3 “15 step” and while it will be awhile before I can give any kind of calmed down reflection of the album, this album is no joke [see edited note below, I listened in the wrong order]. It’s a change of pace from Hail to the Thief, a little less electronic, has some beautiful orchestration, piano and acoustic guitars, yet it contains the same old driving OK Computer-esque rock I love in a Radiohead song (and was almost absent in Amnesiac). So far the first song “Faust Arp” and “Jigsaw Falling in Place” are the ones I like the most. The production sounds incredible, just as good or better than most stuff we hear from coming out of major record labels. It seems like this move on Radiohead’s part (not having a label or distribution) may give rise to some serious questioning from a music industry point of view, especially if they can put something like this out on such a large scale successfully.I think It was well worth the £6 I paid for the pre-order last week for it (thanks to Cate’s early headsup). Check it out here.

The Track Listing

itunes radiohead rainbow track listing

1) 15 Steps
2) Bodysnatchers
3) Nude
4) Weird Fishes/Arpeggi *
5) All I Need
6) Faust Arp *
7) Reckoner *
8) House of Cards
9) Jigsaw Falling Into Place *
10) Videotape

* my favorites right now.

EDIT: Thank you JD who emailed me when he realized that I had the album sorted wrong and was listening by length of track, not my the actual order of the album. The album should start with 15steps and end with videotape. I can’t believe I did that! I guess I will have to start over and listen again!

By Wess

Teacher, author, Quaker, ​and public theologian. He works at Guilford College, enjoys riding his Triumph Bonneville, and listening to music.

4 replies on “First Glance at Radiohead’s In Rainbow”

This may be a bit premature, however, after listening to this album this is their strongest album yet from start to finish. Bold statement considering there have been some incredible Radiohead albums (OK Computer, KID A, and personal fav. The Bends). This also could be Radiohead’s most pop friendly album since The Bends. Hence the reason why I like it so much. Overall, this is a good rock record. Thoughts?

Thanks for the comment Drew. I agree it’s really good, the verdict is still out for me though. I was just listening to Hail to the Thief last night trying to compare the two, and I still really like that one a lot. But my guess is that this one is going to age well with time like all their other albums has. I hadn’t thought about it being pop-friendly either, let me sit on that one for another day.

[…] Number One: Radiohead – In Rainbows. This is by far my favorite of the year (and should be yours too!). While it is easily accessible in it’s presentation, and feels more like a rock album than Kid A, Amnesiac and Hail to the Thief, it is still musically creative when compared to their other more “rock” albums, the Bends and OK Computer. It is a delight to listen to on many levels and is the album I have listened to the most in ‘07 even though it came out only a month ago. But one main reason why I think it should be the best album of 2007 is because this is the album people will be talking about in 15 years as “the album that challenged the music industry,” as well as the way we think about how digital music is distributed. Not only is In Rainbows an incredible record but it ushered in an event that will be talked about for a long time to come [Read my earlier post on In Rainbows]. […]

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