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A Moon Shaped Pool

Radiohead - 2016

Let’s see now. I would have been twenty three years old in the year 2000.  Working at Borders.  College days.  Fronting a band.  Living with buddies.  There was a blue glass, a bat, a gnome, an elderly Asian landlord, and a simply formidable collection of DVDs.   There were fond farewells to the twentieth century and exciting things were happening in popular music.  You had P.J. Harvey’s Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea, Aimee Man’s Bachelor No. 2 and Bjork’s Selmasongs.  The Garage revival was in full swing with The Hives and De Stijl from The White Stripes.  D’Angelo and Erykah Badu gave us Voodoo and Mama’s Gun.  We had debut albums from Jill Scott, Anthony & The Johnsons, and Coldplay.  Live rock albums from Jeff Buckley, Pink Floyd’s Is There Anybody Out There? and a surprising outing from The Black Crowes and Jimmy Page. The self-titled release from Nickel Creek and the Oh, Brother soundtrack had us swaying to bluegrass.  A former Mouseketeer dropped Oops!…I Did It Again and Kylie Minogue lit up the charts with Light Years. Pink said Can’t Take me Home but Joni Mitchell had us look at Both Sides Now and Sade assured us that Lover’s Rock.  Bowie brought us a brilliant bunch from the Beeb while B. B. King and Eric Clapton got together on Riding with the King.  Warren Zevon was there with Life’ll Kill Ya but Ricky Martin kept the Latin craze alive with his hit She Bangs! We can’t forget Wu-Tang Clan’s The WBridging The Gap by The Black Eyed Peas and Shaggy’s Hot Shot would go on to be certified platinum six times in the US.  There was electronic trickery from St. Germain on Tourist and after-hours vibes from Thievery Corporation on their chilled out Mirror Conspiracy. Mark Kozelek released an acoustic album of AC/DC covers as Bill Frisell took us to Ghost Town. And who can forget our collective excitement when The Very Best of Yanni finally hit the shelves. 


2000 was the best year for Radiohead as they released their seminal work Kid A. Unfortunately, 2000 was also the worst year for Radiohead as they released their seminal work Kid A. Who knows what happened to the surge of creativity that propelled their early work but the wheels fell off immediately after Kid A. In regard to Hail to the Thief for instance, Thom Yorke has said that, “we wanted to do things quickly, and I think the songs suffered." The King of Limbs received equal praise with Mojo writing that, “they've delivered their biggest surprise to date. A record that falls short for its constituent parts.” You see, somewhere along the line, Radiohead became part of the establishment that they used to so viscously decry.  Cheap gimmicks such as the Name Your Own Price scam did nothing to improve the quality of their music for the better part of 16 years.  Before A Moon Shaped Pool, they rivaled Pearl Jam alone in the Consistently Underwhelming Albums category.   Don’t get me wrong, nothing on Pool could possibly hold a candle to anything on Kid A but it has helped tip the scale back to the positive side.  At least now, 5 of Radiohead’s studio albums out of 9 are actually worthwhile.  I just feel sorry for the pitiful fools who were duped into supporting a bunch of art students from Oxford as they produced four straight albums of bargain bin noise.  Some people will believe anything and there’s a sucker born every minute.

Posted by C. Scott



Posted: 01/22/2017

Review by:

Dsc 0563

C. Scott

C. Scott ranks this as the
#10 favorite album of 2016