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Radiohead

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Biography

Radiohead are an English rock band that formed in Oxfordshire in 1986. The band's lineup, which has remained the same since its inception, consists of Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, Ed O'Brien, Colin Greenwood and Phil Selway.

In summer 1995, Radiohead toured in support of R.E.M., one of their formative influences and at the time one of the biggest rock bands in the world. Introducing his opening act, Michael Stipe said, "Radiohead are so good, they scare me". The buzz generated by such famous fans, along with a series of distinctive music videos such as "Just" and "Street Spirit", helped to expand Radiohead's popularity outside the UK.

In early 2001, Kid A received a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Album and a nomination for Album of the Year. Many critics branded Radiohead one of the world's most "important" bands, and the record gained the band plaudits for courage and innovation. However, Kid A did not inspire universal praise. Jonny Greenwood said, "I think a lot of writers expected us to come back with a combination of OK Computer and The Bends. The fact that we didn't do that means people who got their guitars out have had to put them back into the wardrobe." Others criticised Radiohead for appropriating underground styles of music and unfairly receiving credit. The band's fans were similarly divided; along with those who were appalled or mystified, there were many who saw Kid A as the band's best work.

from Hail to the Thief - The lead single from Radiohead's sixth album, "There There" demonstrates Radiohead's combination of their layered electronic sound with drums, bass and guitar.

Although Hail to the Thief's title was assumed to be a comment on the controversial 2000 American presidential election, Yorke has denied this, explaining that he first heard the phrase during a Radio 4 discussion of John Quincy Adams, "who stole the election and who was known as 'The Thief' throughout his presidency". Yorke explained that the album was influenced by world events of late 2001 and early 2002, but he also said, "It struck me as the most amazing, powerful phrase... I feel really strongly that we didn't write an protest record, we didn't write a political record."

All Radiohead members have been involved in music projects outside the band. In 1998, Thom Yorke collaborated with Drugstore on the single "El President", and contributed vocals to the UNKLE track "Rabbit in Your Headlights", a collaboration with DJ Shadow. He participated in the 1998 Velvet Goldmine soundtrack, singing Roxy Music cover songs as part of the fictional band "Venus in Furs". In 1999, Jonny Greenwood played harmonica and guitar on Pavement's Terror Twilight and Ed O'Brien contributed to the soundtrack for British television miniseries Eureka Street. In 2000, Yorke sang duets with Björk and PJ Harvey on their respective albums Selmasongs and Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea. Later that year, O'Brien and Selway toured with Neil Finn, Johnny Marr and others for "7 Worlds Collide". O'Brien played guitar on Asian Dub Foundation's 2002 album Enemy of the Enemy.



 


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