Radiohead didn't tour widely last year, so this live-in-studio set – The King of Limbs in full, plus three outtakes – is the closest most fans will get until next month's arena tour to seeing their latest material onstage. It's a revelatory view: Assisted by a brass section, the band transforms knotty ciphers into vital grooves. Cold-blooded compositions like "Bloom" make way more sense when you see actual humans put them together, and who knew "Morning Mr. Magpie" would be great as a punk tantrum? Thom Yorke radiates his usual weirdo charisma, whether hitting a shiver-inducing high note on "Give Up the Ghost" or busting a seizure-shimmy move to "Feral."
This story is from the January 19th, 2012 issue of Rolling Stone.
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