Radiohead is a rock band formed in 1985 in England. It is a group of five musicians, having each their areas of specialization. Thom Yorke is the vocal leader as well as the main songwriter, playing piano and guitar. Johnny Greenwood is the main guitarist, also playing keyboards and ornamentation sounds involving electronics. Colin Greenwood is the bassist of the group. Ed O’ Brien is a guitarist and songwriter for the band, providing backing vocals as well. Phil Selway plays the drum kit and percussion.
This rock band has gained a lot of recognition in the recent past due to the hit albums loved by their innumerable fans (James, 2012). Their debut single was released back in 1992, known as “Creep”. The song “Creep” was unsuccessful until they released their debut album named Pablo Honey a few months later, which made it become a hit throughout the world. Radiohead gained increased popularity after the release of their second album, “The Bends”, which topped the music charts in the UK. Their third album “OK Computer” is often highly praised as a ground-breaking record in the 1990’s.
The progress of this rock band can be argued to be successful (Joseph, 2005). This is evident when comparing and contrasting two of their albums, “Hail to the Thief” and “In Rainbows”. “Hail to the Thief” is the band’s sixth album, produced by Nigel Godrich, in 2003. “Hail to the Thief” marks the end of the contract between Radiohead and Parlophone Records. This album emphasized more of guitar rock while still maintaining the electronic elements of the band. The songs express “disappointment, annoyance and incapacity as well as the massive gap between people who voted for them and those who did not” as said by one of the vocalists. This release sold over a million copies in the United States. Despite the fact that this album was a hit, it is seldom recommended by critics, as they claim there is not a unified mood to it.
“In Rainbows” is the seventh album of Radiohead. This album outsold the previous two albums of the band. “In Rainbows” was recorded in a lengthy period from 2005 to 2007. The success of this hit record can be attributed to its length. “In Rainbows” smoothly melded this band’s experimental side with its impeccable songwriting. Radiohead made the release initially as a download-only album and a pay-as-you-want purchase. Much greater fame than from their previous albums came from the critical reception of “In Rainbows”.
Radiohead continues to gain fame as they produce more and more albums, such as their latest, “The King of Limbs”. They have been familiarized with new technological instruments that have helped them produce better quality albums, helping them to gain more recognition and become the best rock band worldwide.
Hail to the Thief. (2003). S.l.: EMI.
In Rainbows. (2008). S.l.: TBD Records.
Tate, J. (2005). The Music and Art of Radiohead. Aldershot, Hants, England: Ashgate.
Doheny, J. (2012). Radiohead (Updated Ed.). London: Carlton.