Each week The Hard Times travels back to review an album that we probably should have when it came out. This week we’re looking at Radiohead’s iconic “Kid A.”
Ah, yes. Radiohead. The Reel Big Fish of electronica. The Limp Bizkit of experimental music. The Taylor Swift of art rock. A lot of things could be said about this band. Especially this critically acclaimed record.
I remember the first time I ever heard “Kid A” way back in the early 2000s. I had just downloaded a copy from the file-sharing behemoth known as LimeWire. If you don’t remember, LimeWire was like Spotify but totally illegal because artists didn’t get any money from it. Unlike Spotify where they at least get spare change here and there.
Anyway, this album was my very first introduction to the ‘Head, and boy was I floored. The first “Kid A” track I downloaded was an MP3 of their song “Creep.” Simply incredible vibes. Next, I got M4As of “Karma Police” and “High and Dry.” I’m telling you, it was such a mind-blowing start to a piece of work that it almost sounded like it could be a greatest hits album.
From there, “Kid A” kind of took a turn. The next songs that I downloaded were “MmmBop,” “Enter Sandman,” and “Mambo No. 5.” I had heard this band got pretty experimental but I was not expecting this kind of range.
At one point it sounded like I was listening to seven or eight different bands on one album. That being said, I think my favorite Radiohead song of all time is definitely “Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nuthing to F’ With.” That’s track 24 on the album. Not enough experimental art rock bands incorporate hip-hop into their sound.
This album is an absolute classic and quite possibly the most experimental record of all time. If you’re a Radiohead fan, you know exactly what I’m talking about already. It’s just too bad LimeWire had to shut down due to the rampant copyright infringement because I never would’ve found the classic song “Smells_Like_TeenSpirit” by Third Eye Blind without them.
Score: Kid A+