In Case You Missed It: Radiohead ‘Reckoner’
by Yvette Travillian
Radiohead – Reckoner
I can easily say that this is probably one of my best discoveries and to this day an all-time favorite song. ‘Reckoner’ was released as the third single off of Radioheads infamous ‘In Rainbows’ album (2007), which in case you don’t know or have forgotten, was initially released as a digital download with the awesome asking price of ‘pay-what-you-want’ – if-anything-at-all’ until its retail release. Sounds like nothing now since in 2009 it became somewhat of a distribution staple from both major and indie artist in to release an album or mix ‘tape’ for free . But ‘back-then’ for a group as massive as Radiohead to take such a bold step was quite unprecedented. Coincidentally it turned out to be one of their most critically acclaimed albums, which sadly I was about a year plus late on.
ANYWAY, Reckoner is insistent and almost dominant with superb instrumentals; beautiful string arrangements, guitar riffs and percussions. This, coupled with Thom Yorke’s warm falsetto vocals results in an insanely beautiful piece of music. Although the words can initially come off slightly incoherent, the melody however can be unbelievably hypnotizing.
Reckoner in my opinion is kind of non-genre’d (yes I think that’s a made up word)- it’s just a great song that makes you feel good. It can spark introspection and appreciation for life’s art – which can be an good thing, especially at the end of the year.
Another cool fact is that Radiohead also released Reckoner in “stem” formats; meaning individual parts of the song (vocals, guitar and piano) were available for fans to remix through the Radiohead website: Pure genius/awesomeness.
I just can’t find fault in a band that has esteem notoriety, true understanding of the new digital music evolution (that fans are immersed in) all while making solid music. Enjoy.