Eight-track mini-album features the album version of 'My Iron Lung' and seven non-album tracks lifted from various singles off of their first two albums, 'The Trickster', 'Lewis (Mistreated)', 'Punchdrunk Lovesick Singalong', 'Permanent Daylight', 'Lozenge Of Love', 'You Never Wash Up After Yourself' and an acoustic version of their very first hit, 1993's 'Creep'.
When exactly Radiohead transformed themselves from an average alterna-rock band into an avant-garde juggernaut is difficult to pinpoint, but in terms of recording, they took the great leap forward somewhere around the time of their second album, The Bends
. While their debut, Pablo Honey
, had a few sharp hooks, there was nothing to predict the avalanche of ideas that made The Bends
one of the important albums of the 1990s. This EP (which is actually longer than some bands' full albums) doesn't clarify things a bit. The acoustic version of "Creep" that ends My Iron Lung
is a sensitive read, but it doesn't explain the structural leap of the title track, which sounds as if the band had relearned how to play their instruments. Most of the remaining tunes are short, quirky numbers that point up Thom Yorke's penchant for melancholy melodies. Those who treasure the art rock of OK Computer
or Kid A
may find these plaintive pleas for love and understanding almost too simple. --Rob O'Connor