Saturday, July 01, 2006

RADIOHEAD @ The Greek, Los Angeles, June 29, 2006 Pt. 1

Section A, Row K seat 46. Two rows behind Slash, three seats to the right of Steven Bauer. Oh, starry night. The Big Dipper looms overhead...

The band sounds phenomenal. The new songs are strikingly brilliant: "Videotape," "All I Need," "Arpeggi" (which comes with a rapid-fire sub-rhythm somewhere between Aphex Twin and Timbaland), and stunner "Bangers and Mash," featuring our hero Thom Yorke on a drum kit which he summarily destroys by set's end. All welcome additions to the Radiohead canon. "Idiotique" rages with the energy of Underworld's entire catalog, which Yorke's conducts like his own private rave. "Everything in its Right Place" stands as one of their most timeless monuments, truly classic rock, no less evocative than "Baba O'Reilley." Yorke playfully chastises a fan for requesting "Creep," later muttering "'Creep' my ass," during the encore towards the persistent request maker, instead launching into the soulful new ballad "House of Cards." When they revisit "Pablo Honey," the hordes go customarily berserk. Flashbulbs pepper the crowd during a particularly grand performance of "Paranoid Android." They swagger and sway, jerk, sputter and flail. Radiohead have tapped into a particularly 21st century kind of anxiety, and in the process come to define more than just a moment in time. New iconic giants are go.