First listen: Well, there goes any hope of a folksy little rock record. This sounds like a b-side from Kid A. I knew I shouldn’t have gone into this with expectations, but the scant promo material and speculation about the album had me hoping for something much more organic.
Fifth listen: OH MY GOD IT’S LIKE BEING BORN
Morning Mr. Magpie
First listen: Oh wow, they turned Mornin’ M’lud into jazz for people on ecstasy. I remember hearing a version of this song around the time Hail to the Thief was being released and thinking, if they ever finished and recorded the thing, it would be an almost Beatles-y simple rock tune and the stuff of legend. Not sure what to think about this take on it.
Fifth listen: I can’t critique a song that is smarter than I am. Perhaps the song should review me.
Little By Little
First listen: I like this. It reminds me of some of their darker stuff from Amnesiac or Hail to the Thief, but the beat is more frenetic, which seems to be a required feature for a song to make it onto this record. It’s good, but I do kind of feel like they’ve done this song before.
Fifth listen: There is a ghost in my bathroom. I wrote it a letter and it slipped a rose back under the door. This song is the sound of the petals falling, one by one.
First listen: This definitely stays in that Amnesiac / Hail to the Thief space, but I’m kind of into that. Their instrumentals are always good, and they tend to grow on me. It’s like learning a new language, so we’ll see what I think of this in a couple of hours.
Fifth listen: Well, a very very heavy, uh, heavy do it bertation tonight. We had a very darris darrison. But let’s go ahead tarish tazing lesh go the bet to had the pit.
First listen: This sounds like more of a Thom Yorke than a Radiohead song. Apparently they’re not afraid to repeat themselves anymore, because this could easily have been on The Eraser. Also, is the bassline literally the guitar part from PJ Harvey and Thom’s This Mess We’re In?
Fifth listen: DANCE DANCE DANCE DANCE DANCE DANCE DANCE
First listen: Pretty. Every Radiohead album needs one of these dreamy piano tunes, but in contrast to the rest of this record I’d say this song is one of the most sparse and pared down that they’ve done in a long time. I’m not sure how well it fits in, but I really like it.
Fifth listen: I’m drowning. Can you cry under water?
Give Up The Ghost
First listen: And now a guitar! So they do still own musical instruments. Codex didn’t hold the title of the simplest, prettiest song here for long. This is nice.
Fifth listen: When I die I want this song buried with me.
First listen: I heard a live version of this a while ago, and it’s interesting how Radiohead seem to remix their own songs before they get around to releasing them. It’s like they’re bored of them by the time they get into the studio. It would kick a lot of ass if they would release two versions of their stuff from here on out, because whichever one I get leaves a part of me longing for the other.
Fifth listen: Be right back, calling everyone I know to tell them not to call me for the next six months.