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Radiohead — Identikit
Album: A Moon Shaped Pool
Avg rating:
6.7

Your rating:
Total ratings: 833









Released: 2016
Length: 4:13
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Sweet-faced ones with nothing left inside
That we all can love, that we all can love, that we all can
Sweet-faced ones with nothing left inside
That we all can love, that we all can love, that we all can

When I see you messing me around
I don't want to know, I don't want to know, I don't want to
Did I see you messing me around?
I don't want to know, I don't want to know, I don't want

Broken hearts make it rain
Broken hearts

Pieces of a ragdoll mankind
That you can't create, that you can't create, that you can't
Pieces of a wreck of mankind
That you can't create, that you can't create, that you can't

When all I see you messing me around
I don't want to know, I don't want to know, I don't want to
When I see you searching me around
I don't want to know, I don't want to know, I don't want to know
Comments (45)add comment
I appreciate RH as an artistic band. Occasionally, they even grab me. But this track is just annoying.  I gave it a 4 because I'm feeling a bit generous. 
It's simple - You either like RH or you don't.
If you you do, lucky you.  If you don't, your loss.
 Kaw wrote:


You can mock me if you want to but I think it's fair to compare this music with drinking wine. My first wine was cheap sweet and even a little apple flavoured. I could drink the red more expensive one too but it smelled like old wood soaked in alcohol and tasted a little sour and bitter. After a while I started to notice the more delicate taste palettes and my taste shifted ultimately to the 'old wood soaked sour and bitter wines' like an aged rioja from Spain.

Art goes the same way. Everybody likes Vermeer or Rembrandt. Bright colours and nice paintings. Easy to the eye. Van Gogh (for example) (unwantingly) started to paint more impressionalistic (that's a word?). This evolved to modern art where the impression and not the aesthetics matter. (I must say I still have problems liking modern art.)

If I look at music the differences are even greater. When I was young (born 1982) I listened to Abba for example. Good, easy to the ears, transparant and ultimately very predictable. The music on the radio was sort of comparable to the complexity of Abba. Straight forward. 4/4 rithm with 4 major chords. Later on I discovered the Beatles and was introduced to better lyrics, rich melodies and intricate musical patterns. Then my first taste of classical music. Other rithms. Other patterns. Other instruments. Other lyrics. Other languages. Canons, fugues, symphonies. Other harmonical rules. Other ways looking at harmonics. Minimalism. Then I discovered Jazz. And eventually I started to like the later abstract work of Radiohead. Why? They seek the borders of how we look at music and they manage to suprise me quite often with ideas and implementations. Does it sound 'aesthetic'? No, I think it does not. But it makes an impression on me.

Is Radiohead pretentious? I think so. They know they are good and they know they can make music how they like it. But they serve a purpose. You could say that the Beatles (especially John Lennon) were also extremely pretentious. But it turned out that they shaped the future of the music you hear on the radio. Will Radiohead do the same? I think to a certain degree: yes. People will be influenced by them and will use ideas for their own music. Maybe not that much as the Beatles but more than I (and you) will ever achieve.

 

Merriam-Webster.com has two major definitions for the word pretentious:

1: characterized by pretension: such as

b: expressive of affected, unwarranted, or exaggerated importance, worth, or stature

2: making demands on one's skill, ability, or means : AMBITIOUS

Much of Radiohead's music has an air of taking itself a little too seriously, but it's also written & performed with a ton of skill (complaints about Thom's singing style set aside for the moment) and it tends to challenge your expectation of what music is. It's far from simple and is not trying very hard to get you to like it.

The very same could be said about the later work of one of my favorite bands on this station, Talk Talk. Music that transcended art and was completely unlike anything I've heard before in the rock milieu. Songs created & performed in a manner akin to madness. Mark Hollis is quoted as saying, "You should never listen to music as background music." He didn't see why he should have to explain his music to anyone. THAT is the very definition of pretentiousness.

I came to appreciate Talk Talk's music well after the fact, after the legacy of their work had had time to solidify & be acknowledged by rock critics, and I did so within this community, among many others who get the genius of Mark Hollis & Co. I'm also mature enough to understand that the great majority of the masses are not going to like their music, so I don't try to push my views on them. Two major "failings" of Radiohead in this regard are that #1 they are still considered a present musical act, not really gaining the benefit of a career-encompassing view of their work, and #2 their fan base has been very vocal in their exhortations about the band's quality while simultaneously being in a time of unlimited, unfiltered, anonymous criticism from anyone with a keyboard or two thumbs & a phone.

Is Radiohead pretentious? Yes, in both senses of the word. Is/was Spirit Of Eden-era Talk Talk pretentious? Without a doubt. I think the greatest, most challenging works of art or music or movies or literature or philosophy or religion are, probably because they deserve to be. They should be examined critically and appreciated seriously, not as background music.
Dull is another word instead of pretentious.
 Kaw wrote:

You can mock me if you want to but I think it's fair to compare this music with drinking wine. My first wine was cheap sweet and even a little apple flavoured. I could drink the red more expensive one too but it smelled like old wood soaked in alcohol and tasted a little sour and bitter. After a while I started to notice the more delicate taste palettes and my taste shifted ultimately to the 'old wood soaked sour and bitter wines' like an aged rioja from Spain.

Art goes the same way. Everybody likes Vermeer or Rembrandt. Bright colours and nice paintings. Easy to the eye. Van Gogh (for example) (unwantingly) started to paint more impressionalistic (that's a word?). This evolved to modern art where the impression and not the aesthetics matter. (I must say I still have problems liking modern art.)

If I look at music the differences are even greater. When I was young (born 1982) I listened to Abba for example. Good, easy to the ears, transparant and ultimately very predictable. The music on the radio was sort of comparable to the complexity of Abba. Straight forward. 4/4 rithm with 4 major chords. Later on I discovered the Beatles and was introduced to better lyrics, rich melodies and intricate musical patterns. Then my first taste of classical music. Other rithms. Other patterns. Other instruments. Other lyrics. Other languages. Canons, fugues, symphonies. Other harmonical rules. Other ways looking at harmonics. Minimalism. Then I discovered Jazz. And eventually I started to like the later abstract work of Radiohead. Why? They seek the borders of how we look at music and they manage to suprise me quite often with ideas and implementations. Does it sound 'aesthetic'? No, I think it does not. But it makes an impression on me.

Is Radiohead pretentious? I think so. They know they are good and they know they can make music how they like it. But they serve a purpose. You could say that the Beatles (especially John Lennon) were also extremely pretentious. But it turned out that they shaped the future of the music you hear on the radio. Will Radiohead do the same? I think to a certain degree: yes. People will be influenced by them and will use ideas for their own music. Maybe not that much as the Beatles but more than I (and you) will ever achieve.
 
Sir, I salute you.  

aspicer wrote:6.5 - REALLY RP listeners? Hmmmmm......?
 
Imkirok wrote:

Seems high to me.
the webplayer is showing this at 6.6 now...guess my "high" RH rating of 6 didn't hurt the cause too much...Long Live RP!!

Eeeeeeeeew not this whining creature again.
My coworker says Identikit is his favorite song from Radiohead. Personally, the band is in my top 2-3, but there are better tracks to listen to. Sure there's some pretentious stuff to the band...and I wouldn't want 'em any other way!  
Very nice! 
 Thin_Air wrote:
Bela Lugosi's not dead.

 

Check again: Radiohead's playing.    {#Skull}
 aspicer wrote:
6.5 - REALLY RP listeners?  Hmmmmm......?

 
Yeah, that seems very high to me too...
Radiohead songs usually have to grow on me but I've immediately liked everything I've heard from this album.
 aspicer wrote:
6.5 - REALLY RP listeners?  Hmmmmm......?

 
Seems high to me.
 aspicer wrote:
6.5 - REALLY RP listeners?  Hmmmmm......?

 
My thoughts also. Guess it isn't everyone's cup of tea. A clean 10 for me - once I hear it, I can't get it out of my head for hours....  {#Music}
 aspicer wrote:
6.5 - REALLY RP listeners?  Hmmmmm......?

 
Halfway between "Pretty Good" and "Quite Likeable"? Seems fair.
grows on ya.
 aspicer wrote:
6.5 - REALLY RP listeners?  Hmmmmm......?

 
How about a 5? 
6.5 - REALLY RP listeners?  Hmmmmm......?
Bela Lugosi's not dead.
 Ulises wrote:
I see the word "pretentious" used a lot in reference to music but I'm unable to understand its meaning in that context. Anyone out there want to take a stab at educating me?

  

 
OHMish wrote:

I think it's meant in the way that the artist tries to seem like something they're not as a person.
Like people trying to seem sophisticated by drinking expensive wine, reading and quoting all the right advanced books, writing convoluted lyrics.

I guess?

 
You can mock me if you want to but I think it's fair to compare this music with drinking wine. My first wine was cheap sweet and even a little apple flavoured. I could drink the red more expensive one too but it smelled like old wood soaked in alcohol and tasted a little sour and bitter. After a while I started to notice the more delicate taste palettes and my taste shifted ultimately to the 'old wood soaked sour and bitter wines' like an aged rioja from Spain.

Art goes the same way. Everybody likes Vermeer or Rembrandt. Bright colours and nice paintings. Easy to the eye. Van Gogh (for example) (unwantingly) started to paint more impressionalistic (that's a word?). This evolved to modern art where the impression and not the aesthetics matter. (I must say I still have problems liking modern art.)

If I look at music the differences are even greater. When I was young (born 1982) I listened to Abba for example. Good, easy to the ears, transparant and ultimately very predictable. The music on the radio was sort of comparable to the complexity of Abba. Straight forward. 4/4 rithm with 4 major chords. Later on I discovered the Beatles and was introduced to better lyrics, rich melodies and intricate musical patterns. Then my first taste of classical music. Other rithms. Other patterns. Other instruments. Other lyrics. Other languages. Canons, fugues, symphonies. Other harmonical rules. Other ways looking at harmonics. Minimalism. Then I discovered Jazz. And eventually I started to like the later abstract work of Radiohead. Why? They seek the borders of how we look at music and they manage to suprise me quite often with ideas and implementations. Does it sound 'aesthetic'? No, I think it does not. But it makes an impression on me.

Is Radiohead pretentious? I think so. They know they are good and they know they can make music how they like it. But they serve a purpose. You could say that the Beatles (especially John Lennon) were also extremely pretentious. But it turned out that they shaped the future of the music you hear on the radio. Will Radiohead do the same? I think to a certain degree: yes. People will be influenced by them and will use ideas for their own music. Maybe not that much as the Beatles but more than I (and you) will ever achieve.
 peter_james_bond wrote:

I agree with you. It took a while for me to get into this album, but after several listens the album soaks into your bones. Very nice return to form for the band. The album is kind of a mix of acoustic and electronic sounds - many songs have a kind of swirling psychedelic mix of vocals and keyboards in the background. Some tunes remind me of older Floyd, Traffic or Genesis - but always with the Radiohead stamp. Not an album to blast from your car speakers during a summer cruise - more like a night listen with the phones on.

 
Besides the music, RP is a wonderful place to read comments (constructive!) about albums and artists in this forum. Love it.

Thx, PJB. Great review. I'm gonna check it out now.
 whomhow wrote:
Probably it's a great tune but my personal limit of whining songs (and pretentious album covers) is over. 5.

 
I love Radiohead but their album covers are just about the worse
it would be different if it was just one or two but it's all of them
 
 Ulises wrote:
I see the word "pretentious" used a lot in reference to music but I'm unable to understand its meaning in that context. Anyone out there want to take a stab at educating me?
 
It's funny, someone else asked a similar question in another song's comment section.  Here's the primary definition of "pretentious":
"Attempting to impress by affecting greater importance or merit than is actually possessed."

 At the risk of seeming pretentious myself: It's an adjective that can be used to describe not just a person, but the actions or works of a person, as are most other adjectives - words like complicated, sad, beautiful, angry, crazy, serious, etc. It's been used for centuries to describe music, art, literature, and other endeavors. These days it's often become more like a lazy word to dismiss someone or their work without any detailed reason, as in the examples mentioned below by "dwhayslett".
  I don't find Thom Yorke or his music to be "pretentious", but some folks obviously do.
 Ulises wrote:
I see the word "pretentious" used a lot in reference to music but I'm unable to understand its meaning in that context. Anyone out there want to take a stab at educating me?

 
I think it's meant in the way that the artist tries to seem like something they're not as a person.
Like people trying to seem sophisticated by drinking expensive wine, reading and quoting all the right advanced books, writing convoluted lyrics.

I guess?
 Ulises wrote:
I see the word "pretentious" used a lot in reference to music but I'm unable to understand its meaning in that context. Anyone out there want to take a stab at educating me?

 
Along with terms like "boring" and "dated", it means "I don't like it".
I see the word "pretentious" used a lot in reference to music but I'm unable to understand its meaning in that context. Anyone out there want to take a stab at educating me?
Wow, this is nice.
Probably it's a great tune but my personal limit of whining songs (and pretentious album covers) is over. 5.
blargh. Pretentious tuneless nonsense.
 aspicer wrote:
Having had numerous listens now I have to say this album really is excellent overall....but not outstanding, however.  Much better than the last one, but not an In Rainbows, let alone an OK Computer.

 
I agree with you. It took a while for me to get into this album, but after several listens the album soaks into your bones. Very nice return to form for the band. The album is kind of a mix of acoustic and electronic sounds - many songs have a kind of swirling psychedelic mix of vocals and keyboards in the background. Some tunes remind me of older Floyd, Traffic or Genesis - but always with the Radiohead stamp. Not an album to blast from your car speakers during a summer cruise - more like a night listen with the phones on.
This falls into the "What the hell are you listening to now, bloke?" category.  I can't say this impresses me at all.
more dreck from RH
 Steve wrote:

BillG's love affair with RH is renewed. {#Frustrated}

Count me in the negative column. Almost as annoying as Pearl Jam. A solid one, and falling like a rock.

 
I could deal with this track if I hadn't heard Radiohead the last four times or so that I've tuned into RP. I'm beginning to wear out the PSD button. 

These guys are turning into warble-angst for me. A lot of their songs sound the same. 
 aspicer wrote:
Having had numerous listens now I have to say this album really is excellent overall....but not outstanding, however.  Much better than the last one, but not an In Rainbows, let alone an OK Computer.

 
My feeling exactly.  I like the album a lot, but still on a different tier than the two you cited.  Probably the lack of diversity in sound.
I don't like the "electronic" Radiohead.
Give me the vocal harmonies of "Fake Plastic Trees", "Letdown" or "House of Cards".
 the_jake wrote:
Almost always takes me several listens before I can decide with this band.
This song follows that rule for me so far.  
Undecided 

 
Yea I am the same, though a good I find a good bit of their output to be {#Frustrated}
 TheKing2 wrote:
Apparently one either loves or hates RH. This track brings us back to the "old" days with a new twist. A niner.

 
BillG's love affair with RH is renewed. {#Frustrated}

Count me in the negative column. Almost as annoying as Pearl Jam. A solid one, and falling like a rock.
Almost always takes me several listens before I can decide with this band.
This song follows that rule for me so far.  
Undecided 
Having had numerous listens now I have to say this album really is excellent overall....but not outstanding, however.  Much better than the last one, but not an In Rainbows, let alone an OK Computer.
Apparently one either loves or hates RH. This track brings us back to the "old" days with a new twist. A niner.
Great track!
Wow. Every time they put out new music, it sounds so different from all their earlier stuff, and yet is so obviously Radiohead. Another great album.
i like this better than 'Daydreaming'
{#Cool}
Yes-oh YES!!!