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Airbag/How am I Driving?

Release Date: 04.21.98
Record label: capitol
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.


Your Fantasies are Unlucky. But Beautiful.
by: bill aicher

Why review a single you ask? Well, two reason actually. The first being that Radiohead is one of the most influential bands in recent history. The second reason is that this CD is not really a single, it is an EP. There are seven tracks, of which six are previously unreleased. Each of these tracks is a fine example of Radiohead musical taste and style.

The album begins with "Airbag," originally found on the OK Computer album, so there is nothing to get overly excited about - yet... The next track, entitled "Pearly" is a classic Radiohead style. The music is more rock oriented than most of the tracks on OK Computer, it would have fit nicely on The Bends. After "Pearly" we go into a light instrumental entitled "Meeting in the Aisle." This instrumental is a perfect segue on the album, leaving way for the next track.

"A Reminder" is a very slow song, similar to "Bullet Proof... I Wish I Was" or "Black Star". The next song, "Polyethylene (Parts 1 & 2)" is exactly what its name suggests - a two part song. In a style similar to the one used in "Paranoid Android", the song begins slow and quiet and builds to a harder, louder, rock force. The louder section of the song is very similar to "Lucky", only a bit faster. "Melatonin", the next track is a spacy dreamscape with a melancholic Thom Yorke offering up saddened vocals. This is all set over a tribal drum beat.

This dreamscape continues with the final track - "Palo Alto", which switches to a rock song. The rock on this track is more pop than anything they have played in quite some time, taking us back to Pablo Honey days, but ending with a sound which could be straight off of OK Computer.

As you can see, this CD has a mix of everything Radiohead has to offer. Sadly it is only seven tracks. Who ever heard of a single winning album of the year anyways, right?