Radiohead - In Rainbows (LP - 180 Gram Vinyl)
In Rainbows, as a title, implies a sense of comfort and delightfulness. Symbolically, rainbows are more likely to be associated with kittens and warm blankets than the grim and glum circumstances Radiohead is known for soundtracking. There's a slight, if expected, twist at play. The band is more than familiar with the unpleasant moods associated with colors like red, green, and blue -- all of which, of course, are colors within a rainbow -- all of which are present, and even mentioned, during the album. On a couple levels, then, In Rainbows is not any less fitting as a Radiohead album title than "Myxomatosis" as a Radiohead song title.
The one aspect of the album that becomes increasingly perceptible with each listen is how romantic it feels, albeit in the way that one might find the bioport scenes in David Cronenberg's to be extremely hot and somewhat unsettling. Surprisingly, some of the album's lyrics are even more personal/universal and straightforward than anything on The Eraser, the album made by singer Thom Yorke and Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich. The album is very song-oriented, with each track constantly moving forward and developing. Yet there are also abstract electronic layers and studio-as-instrument elements to prevent it from sounding like a regression. In Rainbows will be remembered as Radiohead's most stimulating synthesis of accessible songs and abstract sounds, rather than the world's first pick-your-price download.