Why Radiohead Is Giving Away Their Record

Somebody–the ever-thoughtful Ann Powers at the Los Angeles Times–finally gets to the heart of the reason why Radiohead is selling their new record for whatever price you’re willing to pay.

It’s about the album. They want you to appreciate the record as a whole. They think rock music is about art and exploration, not just machine-assembling catchy jingles, er, songs. 

"In Rainbows" is different because it’s that most old-fashioned of
commodities — a new studio album. A fetish object of the classic-rock
era, the studio album allows artists to firmly mark career high points
while offering listeners a sustained experience, much like a novel or
film.

For about the millionth time, a debate focuses on questions of money, industry, and novelty, ignoring art and truth. Thank God for the idealism of Yorke and his brainy co-conspirators.  I look forward to finding out what they mean by the title "In Rainbows." Sounds like beauty, doesn’t it?

Inrainbows

One thought on “Why Radiohead Is Giving Away Their Record

  1. ”It’s about the *album*.”

    Kit, ever wonder why we call these things albums, ever today, but when way back when we used that term, album for a record that contained 10 to 12 songs or so?

    I always wondered to. Then I found out: the term comes from PHOTO ALBUM, long ago, back in the days of LP’s and 33 rpm records and 78s, and whatever else, people used to store their RECORDS in books that were actually PHOTO ALBUM style books with plastic see through pages, and people would put their favorite records into those PHOTO ALBUM books, and the term ALBUM was adapted to mean a RECORD ALBUM book, and then just the word ALBUM……. I read that online a year ago…. LOS ANGELES Times had the story first…

    Like

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