Amnesiac

Radiohead

Capitol Records, 2001

http://www.radiohead.com

REVIEW BY: Shane M. Liebler

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 11/16/2006

Double albums are for sucks.

From the holy whiteness of the Beatles’ glorified outtake collection to my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 All Eyez On Me, double discs -- no matter how noble in scope, no matter how true in aim -- end up drowning in pretentious grey matter.

Radiohead refused to make the double LP. They survive today because of it.

As I listen to Amnesiac now in 2006, I get the creepy feeling it’s the best thing I’ll hear in my lifetime. But, wait; it’s only their third-best album! It could have been Kid A disc 2. Shudder to think.

Amnesiac is Kid A’s afterword, not its companion. Fans can debate which “Morning Bell” is better (I like Kid A’s icy take), or fanatics can compare “Knives Out” to “Paranoid Android.”

The year between masterpieces made all the difference. The odyssey of 2000 became the tragedy of 2001. You remember.

Together, disc II is the cast-off. The angry “Pakt Like Sardines In A Crushed Tin Box” is an epilogue to “Motion Picture Soundtrack.” The eerie “You and Whose Army” is a B-side. “I Might Be Wrong” isn’t an anthem. After 9/11, it and the rest of the songs are a soundtrack to that time period.

Anger. Echoes. Sadness.

By no stretch of the imagination did Amnesiac predict or soothe our sorrows, but it sure was a nice safety net to have as a nation collapsed around us. When even the quivering of feeble Thom Yorke’s voice seemed stable. When I watched the world explode through a polysynthetic media monocle. When it never went back to normal.

This was a really good record. It still is.

Rating: A-

User Rating: A


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© 2006 Shane M. Liebler and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Capitol Records, and is used for informational purposes only.