Radiohead: Hail to the Thief (2003)


Radiohead
Hail to the Thief; 2003
Capitol Records
My Rating: 58/100
It’s hard to complain about a Radiohead record of any kind. After all, this is one of only a few bands in recent memory to score a string of three near-perfect albums (THE BENDS, OKC, KID A). Given the rousing success of IN RAINBOWS, Radiohead has pretty much cemented their status as the grand champions of left-field pop music. And while there are quite a few great tracks on THIEF, the record suffers from being a little TOO conventional and overly glum (yes, Radiohead can be overly glum). It all begins with the title. In my book, Radiohead’s brilliance lies precisely in their indirect manner of expression. I’m used to a band that skirts the fringes of our present reality, mining the subconscious dread and paranoia fear that haunt us all. I’d much rather leave the political rants to the Rage Against the Machines and Sean Penns of the world. Still, themes aside, THIEF might be a five star record if the production weren’t so LA. I know the band says they were going for a LIVE feels with these songs, but much of THE BENDS was recorded live, and sounded more raw than this. Overall, I still rather enjoy this record, because, once again, it’s Radiohead. But I’d only just place this above PABLO HONEY in ranking the albums.
Cohesion (4/5)
Consistency (3/5)
Concept (4/5)
Consequence (4/5)
Tracks:
1. 2+2=5 (5/5)
2. Sit Down, Stand Up (5/5)
3. Sail to the Moon (4/5)
4. Backdrifts (4/5)
5. Go to Sleep (3/5)
6. Where I End and You Begin (3/5)
7. We Suck Young Blood (2.5/5)
8. The Gloaming (3.5/5)
9. There There (5/5)
10. I Will (3/5)
11. A Punchup at a Wedding (5/5)
12. Myxomatosis (3/5)
13. Scatterbrain (4/5)
14. A Wolf at the Door (4/5)

Radiohead.hailtothetheif.albumartRadiohead
Hail to the Thief; 2003
Capitol Records

My Rating: 58/100

It’s hard to complain about a Radiohead record of any kind. After all, this is one of only a few bands in recent memory to score a string of three near-perfect albums (THE BENDS, OKC, KID A). Given the rousing success of IN RAINBOWS, Radiohead has pretty much cemented their status as the grand champions of left-field pop music. And while there are quite a few great tracks on THIEF, the record suffers from being a little TOO conventional and overly glum (yes, Radiohead can be overly glum). It all begins with the title. In my book, Radiohead’s brilliance lies precisely in their indirect manner of expression. I’m used to a band that skirts the fringes of our present reality, mining the subconscious dread and paranoia fear that haunt us all. I’d much rather leave the political rants to the Rage Against the Machines and Sean Penns of the world. Still, themes aside, THIEF might be a five star record if the production weren’t so LA. I know the band says they were going for a LIVE feels with these songs, but much of THE BENDS was recorded live, and sounded more raw than this. Overall, I still rather enjoy this record, because, once again, it’s Radiohead. But I’d only just place this above PABLO HONEY in ranking the albums.

Cohesion (4/5)
Consistency (3/5)
Concept (4/5)
Consequence (4/5)

Tracks:

1. 2+2=5 (5/5)
2. Sit Down, Stand Up (5/5)
3. Sail to the Moon (4/5)
4. Backdrifts (4/5)
5. Go to Sleep (3/5)
6. Where I End and You Begin (3/5)
7. We Suck Young Blood (2.5/5)
8. The Gloaming (3.5/5)
9. There There (5/5)
10. I Will (3/5)
11. A Punchup at a Wedding (5/5)
12. Myxomatosis (3/5)
13. Scatterbrain (4/5)
14. A Wolf at the Door (4/5)

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