Strange Dance

Strange Dance

In the months leading up to Strange Dance, Radiohead drummer Philip Selway said one of the things he liked about the album was that it sounded like a 55-year-old guy who wasn’t trying to hide the fact that he’s 55. Not exactly a rock ’n’ roll sentiment, but then again, Radiohead was never really a rock ’n’ roll band. Evincing the same balance of subtlety and adventurousness that makes his day job interesting, Strange Dance feels like a more straightforward version of the English art pop of artists like Robert Wyatt or late-period Blur, whose lushly orchestrated melancholy is anchored by a sense of yearning so intense you imagine it’s only decorum that keeps him in check. Adrift in a deep space of his own design, he urges someone (himself?) to hold tight against the rage of the crowd (“Little Things”) and remember that today is almost yesterday and tomorrow is nearly here (“There’ll Be Better Days”).

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