Radiohead -- Hail to the Thief Is it art?: Radiohead -- Hail to the Thief

By Spider on Monday, June 16, 2003 - 09:55 am:

    First off -- Dougie, you need to get this.

    Second -- I had heard much of Hail to the Thief a few weeks ago, after my brother had downloaded it and burned it for me, but I must not have been paying too much attention, because I thought it was only "great."

    It's beyond great. It's phenomenal. Though it doesn't break new ground like OK Computer did, it's better than OK Computer because their skills have been honed and perfected. Even the two weaker songs, "Backdrifts" and "Go to Sleep," are only weaker in the whole context of the album -- taken on their own, they're very good.

    "Sail to the Moon," the third track, may be the most beautiful thing they've ever written. It's very simple, with simple lyrics and a simple melody, but it's ravishing. Thom Yorke wrote it for his son (aww).

    Seriously, everyone must try to hear this. Go install Kazaa and download "Sail to the Moon" and "Where I End and You Begin" if you're reluctant to buy it at first. Then get it.

By Spider on Monday, June 16, 2003 - 11:51 am:

    Look for "There There," too.

By Spider on Monday, June 16, 2003 - 01:40 pm:

    I was wrong -- "Go to Sleep" is a fine song. "The Gloaming" is kinda weak, for this album.

By Dougie on Wednesday, June 18, 2003 - 09:06 pm:

    Got it Spidey. And I absolutely LOVE it. This was the one I was waiting for from them. I was reading your post where you said "Go to Sleep" was one of their weaker songs, and I was like, wait a minute, that's one of my favorite songs on the album, especially the tripped out guitars at the end. I'm also digging Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots by the Flaming Lips. It's a beautiful concept album. And in a completely different vain and when I'm in the mood for it, The Thorns new album. It's kind of a folksy pop cross between America and Crowded House.

By Dougie on Wednesday, June 18, 2003 - 09:44 pm:

    Oh, and the new Cousteau album, Sirena, is pretty awesome.

By Spider on Thursday, June 19, 2003 - 09:22 am:

    I was wrong about "Backdrifts," too. :) I really like it now.

    I think this has become one of my favorite albums of all time. I can't stop listening to it.

    I find "Myxomatosis" weirdly sexy.

By Spider on Thursday, June 19, 2003 - 09:22 am:

    I forgot to say, I'm so glad you like it, Dougie!

By Rowlf on Thursday, June 19, 2003 - 06:58 pm:

    while you're at it, get the new Mogwai "happy songs for happy people"

By semillama on Friday, June 20, 2003 - 10:07 am:

    while you're at it, get Rise Above.

    ARRGGG!!!!!!!RAARR!!!! STOMPSTOMPSTOMP, wave fist, wave fist.

By Spider on Friday, June 20, 2003 - 02:45 pm:

    For my birthday, my brother got me a documentary on the band Pavement, directed by Lance Bangs, plus the DVD includes all 13 of their videos.

    I watched it last night. God, the nostalgia almost choked me. I almost cried, I swear to God.

    Even to this day, I can't listen to "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" without feeling like it's 1994 and the summer sun is shining and the happy little trees are waving to me as I'm driving to California with my cousins. I want to go back there.

    Stephen Malkmus is a beautiful, beautiful man. It needs to be said.

    And the early '90s need to be codified as the era of fantastic sunny-lazy garage music, if they're not already. 1991 ("the year punk broke"?) to 1993 were the peak years. And damn me, if I'd only been a few years older, I would have been able to enjoy the times better. I'm so glad I had friends with musically-conscious older brothers and sisters.

By Spider on Friday, June 20, 2003 - 02:57 pm:

    Man, I can't write. The DVD my brother gave me includes the documentary and the band's 13 videos, plus two entire live concerts. I believe there is band commentary to go with the videos and other goodies.

    Boy, my brother went all out for my birthday this year. That was nice of him.

By Rowlf on Saturday, June 21, 2003 - 10:46 pm:

    When did Lester Bangs die again?

By patrick on Tuesday, June 24, 2003 - 03:07 pm:


    Lester? Lance? Same people? Brothers?

    though im not a huge fan of radiohead....i think their pretty ok, but one thing that really struck me watching something on mtv the other day...a show they did in NYC recently and i kept thinking how much they remind me of The Fall at times.

    Thats a good thing mind you.

    That is all.

By Spider on Tuesday, June 24, 2003 - 03:25 pm:

    Lester Bangs died in 1999. I don't think Lance Bangs is related to him.

By patrick on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 12:24 pm:

    hey spider, if you are interested, at 11am PST, exclusive full-band interview with radiohead at click on the simulcast button. nic harcourt, the DJ is pretty good so it should be a swell interview.

By Spider on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 12:49 pm:

    Wow, thanks!

By Spider on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 03:18 pm:

    Dammit, Patrick, I can't get a connection to the broadcast. It looks like they'll archive the interview, though, so I'll try again tomorrow.

    This pisses me off.

By patrick on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 03:20 pm:

    really? Im listening to it right now. whats happening? keep trying.

By Spider on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 03:44 pm:

    I keep getting "cannot connect to server" or "unable to locate server" messages. Too much traffic?

By patrick on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 03:56 pm:

    i've been logged on since i arrived at does act up from time to time.

    well, i think you'll really dig it because its a very intimate interview along with accoustics songs. an hour long.

By Spider on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 04:01 pm:


By patrick on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 04:05 pm:

    i would imagine it will be archived almost right away as it was recorded last week. i was wrong, it wasnt live.

By Spider on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 04:43 pm:

    So, did you like what you hear? Did the band say anything interesting?

By patrick on Thursday, June 26, 2003 - 06:02 pm:


    Im luke warm about their music. Im sure you'll dig it though.

    Actually i was distracted from what paying attention to what they were saying because the DJ, preceeding the airing said "On a rainy day in NYC last week, and if you listen closely you can hear the rain, ..." I spent most of the time i was paying attention to see if i could hear the rain.

By c on Friday, June 27, 2003 - 03:19 am:

    spider, I never e-mailed you back either. I'm sorry.

By J on Friday, June 27, 2003 - 02:07 pm:

    Thanks Patrick, I love Radiohead and am listening to your link now:)

By Spider on Friday, June 27, 2003 - 02:16 pm:

    I'm not, dammit. I still can't connect.

By patrick on Friday, June 27, 2003 - 02:21 pm:

    the problem is you then. what player are you using? if its windowns media, ditch it and download RealPlayer

By Spider on Friday, June 27, 2003 - 02:40 pm:

    I tried both Windows Media and RealPlayer. No dice.

By Spider on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 02:48 pm:

    Patrick, I'm listening to the live (well...) Radiohead performance now. I finally got a connection.

By Spider on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 02:48 pm:

    Argh, connection problems!

By Nate on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 03:02 pm:

    i got my hands on this one the night before last. i also think it is quite brilliant.

    though i prefer 'the gloaming' to 'hail to the thief' as a title. from my memory of my quick scan of the liner notes, it seems like the band refers to the album as 'the gloaming'.

    the two titles seem to be two sides of the same coin, especially if you are one of those lefty freaks who think that george bush is the beginning of the end.

    and dougie, 'yoshimi' is not a concept album. or so says the flaming lips. but it is also brilliant. it was my boner du jour a few ago.

By Spider on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 03:09 pm:

    If you listen to the broadcast and skip ahead to about 12 min, 30 sec into the show, you'll hear a very nice performance of "Sail to the Moon." I love that damned song.

    I think "the Gloaming" is a little precious for an album title. They made the right decision to change it.

    Ooh, interview is beginning!

By Nate on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 04:48 pm:

    i guess i prefer "precious" to trite, recount-until-gore-wins, bumper sticker blah.

By Spider on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 05:03 pm:

    It's not a reference to Bush, specifically. It's about everyone in power who is using their power to abuse others. The band has said as much in recent interviews --

    Later on, Colin Greenwood says "People need to focus on bigger issues instead of whether George Bush is an idiot or not."

    Jonny Greenwood adds "We'd never name a record after one political event like Bush's election. The record's bigger than that. Hopefully it will last longer than Bush unless he's getting a whole dynasty together, which is always possible. One of the things Thom's singing about is whether or not you choose to deal with what's happening. There are a lot of lines about escaping and avoiding issues, about keeping your head down and waiting. Everybody feels like that from time to time as much as they feel frustration about things they can't change. It's a confusing time right now but that doesn't mean that we're issuing any kind of manifesto. It's more like we're summing up what it's like to be around in 2003."

By Nate on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 05:26 pm:

    while i'm glad it isn't their intent, the phrase was used in excess in reference to the election of george bush. which is why i prefer 'the gloaming'.

By Rowlf on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 07:29 pm:

    "hail to the thief" is vague and universal...

    NOFX and their "War on Errorism" cover however...

    thats not very smart. even for the people who'll find it funny (and that'll be few since its actually pretty badly done), it will be outdated possibly within a year and a half

By Nate on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 07:46 pm:

    it isn't vague and universal. 'hail to the chief' is unique to the american president.

    fuh. i don't actually care about this.

    carry on.

By Rowlf on Monday, June 30, 2003 - 08:19 pm:

    its the Presidents song, but the phrase and song have been around since 1831 - its one of those phrases thats become an expression for anyone in command - its a phrase used everywhere, not just a song title.

By Spider on Tuesday, July 1, 2003 - 09:20 am:

    Heh heh heh.

By TBone on Saturday, July 5, 2003 - 07:34 am:

    Got my hands on this album when it finally appeared in the studio last week. I'm surprised it took so long. Radiohead gets more airplay than anyone 'round here.

    And, uh... It's good. I really like it. Goddammit, I can barely put words together. I've been trying to get rid of this shitting 2-6AM Saturday shift and nobody will take it from me.

    At least there's a computer in the studio so I can Sorabji. If anybody is awake, y'all should hit and listen to me slur into the mic.

    Good Morning!

By Dougie on Friday, April 9, 2004 - 11:54 am:

    Just got 7 Television Commercials (DVD of 7 Radiohead videos). I had never seen the video for Just. What the fuck does the guy lying on the ground say at the end? I slow-mo'd it to see if I could read his lips, but no go. Fuckers.

By dave. on Friday, April 9, 2004 - 12:24 pm:

    that's the best radiohead video.

By wisper on Friday, April 9, 2004 - 12:58 pm:

    the point is not to know.

    best video, indeed.

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