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This Oxford band are not only some of the greatest musicians in the world but they also have some brilliant videos to go along with their music. Ranging from simple videos such as 'Street Spirit' or 'No Surprise' where Tom Yorke's head is in a tank filling up with water, to the animated strange video for 'Paranoid Android' these videos always capture the imagination.
Possibly my favriote video though has got to be the video for 'Just' which feature a man walking down the street who stops and lies on the floor, then another man who doesn't see the man on the floor trips over him. He asks the man on the floor why he is down there, but the man won't tell him, a crowd gather all asking why the man is on the floor, he tells them they don't want to know, but they keep on so he tells them whatever it is (the audience doesn't get to know), then all the people are lying on the ground. really well made video that makes you think.
Radiohead are an amazing band and genrally the videos match this, well worth a watch.
These bruises just won't heal. Now, on the whole, I'm a major Radiohead fan, in fact "The Bends" has been given the title of all time favourite album on the bottom of many an opinion here. The mix of maudlin and depressing and upbeat and soothing is great to listen to and, when mixed with some startling and appealing visuals, you've got an absolute triumph. Videos I'm partial to from the radiohead stable: 1. Fade Out: ------------ Album: The Bends. If you don't know the song you've missed out on a treat here - the music is almost acoustic, fingerpicking and melodic with a weird, dreamlike quality to it. The song itself is depressing and mournful but a great one to listen to when you're in the mood (always if you ask me.....) The video - that's what I'm writing about so I guess I'd best get on with it... All in black and white, a depressing scene set in a caravan site. All the band are there sat around their trailer and stricken with incredibly bored looks on their faces. Quick cuts throughout the video. We've got ballet dancers, small children, dogs, chairs and buckets of water. The genius of the video, what gives it that bit of edge, is the way it is edited - all sorts of differences in timings make this a really special thing to watch - the boy moves out of the way of the water thrown at him as it goes in slow-motion while he is normal speed. The ballet dancers reach the apex of their leap and slow almost to a halt before their momentum brings them down again and the boy walks up to the slow-motion dog tied to its chain and off again before it lands. Doesn't sound too extreme but it is all done in time to the music which really tops off the whole thing perfectly. 2. No Surprises: ---------------- Album: OK Computer. One of my favourite Radiohead songs and again
one with some strange undertones to the lyrics. Great music (all high-up on the fret board and very nice rhythmically). The Video - very very simple. The lead singer's head is in an upside down goldfish bowl (or at least what looks like an upside down goldfish bowl) with a corridor behind him, as the song progresses the lights go on in the corridor and the bowl fills up with water until his head is totally submerged. The words to the song come up in mirror writing from the bottom of the bowl to the top throughout and the singer looks as though he's reading off a script. Overall this video seems to be some kind of experiment in how long the singer can hold his breath. It all looks very sterile and scientific and adds a feeling of medical experimentation to the song. A great one. There's my 2nd opinion of the day written. I'm sure many of you are aware that this is not my habit but I'm quite bored at work..... Have a good day and, if you're into Radiohead and want to see a few of their voids; get a hold of "7 Television commercials." Quality.
Not only do Radiohead produce the best music of their generation – they produce the best videos, documentaries and live gig footage of the last decade as well. Those Oxford swines want it all. They’ll want to be popes next. Having recently bought the ‘Live at the Astoria’ video I now feel I am in a position to judge all three, starting with the aforementioned ‘Live at the Astoria’. Live at the Astoria ---------------------------- Recorded in 1994, shortly before the release of The Bends, Radiohead’s only live-gig video release to date features the majority of debut album Pablo Honey as well as several from their follow up LP. Watching it now seems strange – people moshing to Radiohead just doesn’t seem right following the last three albums. However, there is no doubt that the songs from Pablo Honey were worthy of moshing, as they grew into snarling beasts live. Whereas on Pablo Honey songs such as Prove Yourself were fairly gentle and similar to the quieter moments on The Bends, such as Nice Dream, played live they grow and become frenzied fits of guitar solos, especially from Jonny Greenwood. Songs such as You, Ripcord and, of course, Creep and Anyone Can Play Guitar do not seem out of place amidst Bends’ classics such as My Iron Lung and Black Star. The audience that night may seem amusing to a watcher now – they go mad for the Pablo Honey songs whilst Thom Yorke has to apologise for playing the new songs such as My Iron Lung, Fake Plastic Trees and Street Spirit. Bizarre. The recording is really well done, with good timing of camera changes and a good re-production of the atmosphere of the place. The strobe lighting at the end of the gig in particular is absolutely amazing – if you are epileptic then this video is not for you. The band themselves seem more relaxed than they did during any other point until recently. Thom Yorke was still playing rockstar and was prep
ared to play songs such as the now oft-slated Pop Is Dead. For anyone who liked the early Radiohead days, where the band were simply rock at its best, then this video is for them. I like all the Radiohead music from Pablo Honey to Amnesiac and this video probably contains the best versions I’ve got of the Pablo Honey songs. 7 Television Commercials ------------------------- Without a doubt, those who own The Bends and Ok Computer should also own 7 Television Commercials. Made up of the seven videos that accompanied the singles lifted from both albums, this video features some of the finest music videos of the last ten years – from the beauty of Street Spirit to the insanity of Paranoid Android and the cleverness of Just. Paranoid Android – The entire film is animation, following the day of one small boy. There are moments where a woman comes from a tree and flashes to the boy and his friend who in turn go to their waiting cab. She calls them back and they begrudgingly give her some cash. At other moments the boy is pointed at and laughed at in a bar before the bar-woman pours a drink over his head. Coincidentally, the line ‘kicking squealing Gucci little piggy’ was a reference to a woman who knocked a drink on Yorke in a bar in America. The director of the video would have had no idea about this when making it as he only had access to the lyrics and music and had no background information. At the end of the video the boy is sitting on a lamppost with a fat man attempting to chop him down from there. An angel comes in a helicopter and rescues the boy and while they go and play table tennis, the man chops his limbs off and falls in a river. Is really strange yet really good. Street Spirit – Absolutely stunning piece, filmed in black and white with lots of speeding up and slowing down of movements. Yorke falls in slow motion from the top of a caravan and smashes mirrors, Phil and Jonny jump ar
ound a lot. It goes with the song perfectly and helps complete one of the finest releases of all time – great song, great b-sides (Bishops Robes and Talkshow Host) and a great video. Great stuff. No Suprises – Featuring Thom Yorke’s head in a tank gradually filling with water, the video again goes extremely well with the song. Although it looks as though he keeps his breath for about a minute, the music was in fact speeded up during the part where he was fully underwater. Karma Police – This time Thom Yorke is in the back of a car that’s being self-driven in pursuit of a man running down the road. After catching the man, the car comes to a sticky end as he lights a match and drops it. However, fast and far the car goes it is now doomed to blow up. Interesting fact of this video is that the producers pumped carbon monoxide into the back of the car where Thom was, without his knowledge, so it isn’t him wallowing in self-pity – he is actually drugged in the video! Just – One of the cleverest videos, and most conventional, on the collection. Tells the story of a man lying in the middle of the road, with members of the public all around him trying to get him to say what is wrong. At the climax of the song, he finally decides that he will tell them, and as the band look down from a room above, all the other people spread themselves out on the ground. Supposedly lip-readers have said the man revealed ‘I like banana yogurt’, but in reality there isn’t actually a ‘thing’ that is said. High And Dry (US Version) – Probably my least favourite of the Radiohead videos I have seen, it features the band in a café in middle America with different people singing along to the song. Bit low budget, bit low quality. Fake Plastic Trees – Similar video to that of Pulp’s Common People, released in the same year, in that the band members are being pus
hed around in shopping trolleys. This video is one of the more amusing Radiohead moments (along with Paranoid Android and Knives Out). Meeting People Is Easy --------------------------- The documentary of Radiohead’s Ok Computer tour is probably the most talked about video in their collection. Although the band now say that it depicts a scene worse than it actually was, Meeting People Is Easy shows the problems the band had in dealing with success, particularly frontman Thom Yorke. The video is appealing for two main reasons for fans. Firstly it has an incredible amount of quality live footage of the tour, including many new songs for it’s time and a few that are still unreleased. Songs such as How To Disappear Completely, Life In A Glasshouse and the as-yet unreleased Big Ideas (Neut) and Big Boots (Man-O-War) are all present along with B-sides such as Palo Alto and album tracks such as Lucky, Creep and Climbing Up The Walls. Secondly, it gives a valuable insight into the mental state of the band during the years running into Kid A and Amnesiac and it shows how it would have been impossible for the band to have simply reproduced another Ok Computer-like album. If they had done then the result would have been stale instead of the fresh music in songs such as Idioteque, The National Anthem, Like Spinning Plates and I Might Be Wrong. At one point in the video you hear Thom Yorke telling Jonny Greenwood and Ed O’Brien that he feels they might be better ‘getting out when the going’s good’. The feeling of the documentary is similar to that of the latest two albums – claustrophobic, nauseous, paranoid and a general feeling that Yorke in particular wants to make his music but not have success.
"The video of Paranoid Android has been censored by MTV. They took all nipples out of the cartoon, but they had no problem with the scene in which a man cuts off his own arms and legs." - Thom Yorke. A naked woman in a tree; an axe-welding politician; an angel flying a helicopter; and a game of ping-pong in heaven. All of that's just from the first film in this collection! Directed by Magnus Carlsson (creator of the animated series 'Robin'), the video for 'Paranoid Android' is produced just like an episode of that cartoon. We follow a couple of teenagers and their escapades in the city, while a disaffected UN politician drowns his sorrows, finally culminating in a surreal meeting on a bridge. Although this certainly isn't my favourite Radiohead video, it's still interesting to watch, and of course is accompanied by an epic song. This collection, entitled '7 Television Commercials', brings together all of the videos from Radiohead's second and third albums, 'The Bends' and 'OK Computer'. While most music videos simply feature the band playing (with some 'cool stuff' going on in the background), Radiohead's couldn't be further from that bland formula. Indeed, they even decide to subvert it in the video for 'Just', making the 'background' incidents a lot more interesting than the band themselves. For me at least, the highlights of this tape are the two videos directed by Jonathan Glazer: 'Karma Police' and the quite brilliant 'Street Spirit'. Glazer is one of the best music video directors working at the moment, and his other credits include Jamiroquai's 'Virtual Insanity' and UNKLE's 'Rabbit in Your Headlights'. If you can catch the Channel 4 documentary on him, it's well worth watching. 'Street Spirit' is one of those songs you just stop and listen to. It's easily my favourite Rad
iohead single; and with its haunting opening melody and Thom Yorke's sepulchral vocals, the band have never sounded more poetic. It's fitting then that the video is just as beautiful as the music. By shooting in black-and-white and blending extreme slow motion with normal footage, Glazer captures the spirit of the song perfectly. One exquisite shot shows Thom smashing two opposing sheets of glass, alternating between them as the glass fragments hang almost motionless in mid-air. I think it's safe to say that 'Street Spirit' contains some of the finest cinematography I've ever seen in a music video. Glazer's other contribution, while not being as visually stunning as 'Street Spirit', still manages to captivate, perhaps through its deceptively soporific nature. "Karma police, arrest this man" are the opening lyrics, while the majority of the video is filmed looking through the windscreen of a slow-moving car as it chases someone down a darkened road. The song originated from one of the band's sayings: "The karma police will catch up with him sooner or later" - the video essentially shows what you get if you mess with someone. Great stuff. I don't want to discuss every video in detail in this opinion, but I do think 'No Surprises' deserves a special mention. The entire video is just one stationary shot of Thom wearing a glass helmet, looking straight back at the camera while the song's lyrics scroll up the screen. The helmet gradually fills up with water, until Thom is submerged for almost an entire minute. The lullaby nature of the song is very calming, while the actual video is perfectly suited to the lyrics, touching on the idea of feeling trapped and wishing for a quiet life. The remaining three videos on the tape are: • the much-talked about 'Just' • the U.S. version of 'High and Dry' - a bit like a Tarantino movie • 'Fake Plastic Trees' - the band are pushed around a supermarket in shopping trolleys! a couple of interesting facts... ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ • during the filming of the Karma Police video, carbon monoxide was accidentally pumped through the air conditioner, poisoning Thom as he sung in the back seat. Apparently he even fainted during the final part of the song, and the crew had to pull him out of the car and give him oxygen. • the most frequently asked question on the alt.music.radiohead newsgroup is "What did the man say at the end of the 'Just' video?"... Unfortunately, the band have said they will never reveal the answer. Watch it for yourself and see if you can work it out. iMMersE your soUL in LOVE at www.radiohead.com or www.followmearound.com
Ok, radiohead do not only have amazing songs and albums, but when they release singles they also release great videos. One that springs to mind is the "Just" single. This video is amazing. I'll not give it away but you have to see it, even if only for thoms mick jagger impersonation. Next video up would be the High and Dry Video--Now there are two versions of this video, an american version and british version. The american version is the one included on this video and again it is truly amazing. The street spirit video has to be their best video to date, the slow motion effects in it are second to none and they go with the song beautifully, it'll take your breath away. All videos included on this tape are- Paranoid Android, Fake Plastic Trees, Just, High And Dry, Karma Police, Street Spirit and No Surprises. Buy this video now, it BELONGS in your collection!
Meeting People is Easy is unlike any rock documentary I've ever seen before. Director Grant Gee does an amazing thing, he actually captures the artistic vision of Radiohead. There are the obligatory trapped rock star scenes, but they are more effective here than in other documentaries because the members of the band are so nice that you feel actual sympathy for them. They are so nice that you don't want them to have to face this everyday. But the music is so brilliant that you can't help wanting to see every move they make. The video includes a lot of live performances as well as some footage of sound checks and studio work. I was very excited to hear the new songs Radiohead are working on, they are brilliant as ever. New songs Man Of War (Big Boots) and Big Ideas (Don't Get Any) are outstanding and I hope they'll both be on the next album. The camera work is outstanding. The camera will pick up images that perfectly complement the songs that accompany them. The editing is also a work of genius. There are great parts. A reporter asks what the dumbest question the groups ever been asked is and the scene ends there. It's hilarious. Other highlights include a British talk show panel, composed entirely of a very proper middle-aged group, trashes Radiohead for being so gloomy. It's outstanding. You get the sense that they don't understand Radiohead's music because they don't have the depth to. Grant Gee succeeds in capturing the spirit of Radiohead's OK Computer, the film will often switch scenes suddenly and emit beeping noises. Although everything is done with electronics, there is the sense that Gee is exploiting it to make a point about technology. The beeping doesn't even seem foreign, it's just seems like part of life. It's a very clever examination of technology. At the beginning, Gee has concert footage of Thom Yorke singing beautifully while newspaper articles praising Radiohead flash around
the screen. It's like Radiohead is in the eye of the hurricane, doing what it does, oblivious to criticism both good and bad. They are just moving so fast that all they can do is keep playing like nothing is happening. It's beautifully portrayed in the video. Of course, I'm a Radiohead fan. So maybe other people wouldn't enjoy this video as much as me. But I thought it was outstanding. It was even more than I hoped for. I was expecting a chronicling of Radiohead's OK Computer tour with some new songs. What I got was a work of art.
This video was recorded a short time before the Bends came out. It is the concert the video for "My Iron Lung" was filmed at - the song is actually the concert version with the vocals re-recorded. The concert is great - they play songs off the first and second album, and I haven't often heard some of the songs played live apart from on this video. The camera work is very good, and the sound quality is excellent. It is an altogether great concert, one you can watch again and again. It catches the experience of the gig really well. The best bit is when Thom does "Creep, there's a shot from about half way back, and it's of everyone's hands in the air. it's quite an emotional shot.
For those of you who bought this video I pity you, as this documentary appeared twice on Channel 4's 4music segment, and so I just taped it off the TV and got it for free. But if you weren't aware or able to see it then, I guess it's still justified buying it - for the video's case.. Anyhow, 'Meeting People Is Easy' is a real gem for Radiohead fans as it gives us a little peak into the touring life (on the 'OK Computer' tour) of one of the UK's greatest and most popular bands of today. The most noticable thing about the documentary is the visual weird artiness to it. If you have the last two Radiohead albums, you'll be familiar with the Stanley Donwood abstract/childlike/funny artwork. It's kind of mildly disturbing, but not very. If you've also visited radiohead.com lately you'll also still know what I'm on about. In the video, the band seem rather vulnerable - rather burned out, and something the band had only recently revealed was true. Despite penning a masterpiece album and playing historic shows, as lone individuals they were messing up due to the pressures of the success of their art. They were suffering, a cliche that came true, and only now seems to be becoming recitified. Thom Yorke looked ill, pissed off, and the other members in the interviews had blank expressions and weren't overly talkative. I'm not sure whether this is because they're not fancy media loving rockstars or if they were generally physically and mentally numbed, or both. It's not all doom and gloom though, it is an enjoyable video as it's interesting, entertaining, and has it's funny moments. It's a nice Radiohead information package. Aside from that, the great live foorage, the antics between touring - and again the directorial visuals make this fascinating viewing for Radiohead fans. This is definetly a good insight into any rock band, and particularly this one, in a non-stan
dard original way, it's recommended viewing, and definetly it's the best Radiohead video (of the two) to date. See it!