radiohead: the king of limbs comes early

That Radiohead, always keeping us guessing. If you haven’t already listened to the 8-song album The King Of Limbs about 5 times through, you should know it was digitally released this morning — a day ahead of the date announced earlier this week.

On the Radiohead continuum, album number eight seems to slide in somewhere between Kid A and Amnesiac. Those of us hoping for a companion piece to In Rainbows will be downloading disappointment.

The experimental vibe, brief run time and relative haste in which it was released suggest it’s a stopgap — perhaps a glorified EP. But then Radiohead are no longer bound by record company convention, evidenced by the elaborate “Newspaper Album” package to come May 19th.

So what of The King Of Limbs? A video for the song “Lotus Flower” was also released today, featuring Thom alone in an industrial basement pantomiming and pop-n-locking his little heart out:

That tune kicks off the B-side of the album, as you can see below:

  1. Bloom
  2. Morning Mr. Magpie
  3. Little By Little
  4. Feral
  5. Lotus Flower
  6. Codex
  7. Give Up The Ghost
  8. Separator

“Bloom” is a train wreck of an opener, with chopped drum samples and incessant loops. The rest of side A is quite satisfying, however, beginning the with the herky jerky “Morning Mr. Magpie”:

“Little By Little” is a classic Radiohead acoustic jam:

And “Feral” is an appropriately named return to weirdness:

The other track worth noting is the album closer, “Separator.” Probably the closest Thom has ever come to writing a ballad:

So what do you think? Probably worth the 9 bucks for an MP3 download. It is Radiohead after all.

UPDATE — Stream the entire album here to fully try before you buy:

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4 thoughts on “radiohead: the king of limbs comes early

  1. Anonymous

    Radiohead isn't my favorite band but every single album that they put out has some jaw dropping moments. Been through the album twice and the jaw dropper moments for me are the excellent "Morning Mr. Magpie", "Lotus Flower" and is there another band in the world capable of song like "Ferel"?

  2. Kenn

    The 'don't hurt me' chant in 'Give Up the Ghost' will ring in my ears all weekend.

  3. Kenn

    Thought on the short tracklist…this was the norm in 1983. If you were Van Halen you mailed in 6 and covered 3.

  4. Anonymous

    Heard you and big dumb Danny talking about the album this morning and I think it's important to mention that this album is a grower. I've been through it about 10 times now and every time it gets better. It's very subtle and it rewards repeat listens. Also, I feel like the band is truly trying to break new ground and new ground can sound jarring at first. How many people loved Kid A the first few times through?

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