Radiohead // Other Lives @ 1stBank Center 03.13.12
It’s been nine years since Radiohead last came to Denver. It was a summer show at Red Rocks with my beloved Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks. Us Colorado fans were treated to one of the more intimate shows of the tour; Santa Barbara’s venue is only 4,500 for capacity. The pairing with Oklahoma’s best exports since the Flaming Lips, Other Lives, blended well as openers for the UK titans.
Other Lives had breezed through Denver last December. Something struck me a little different this time around. Their whimsical brand of swirling loops finally sunk and had me thinking that their music would’ve been perfect accompanying Cormac McCarthy’s post-apocalyptic book, “the Road.” Jesse Tabish soft falsetto vocals filled the small arena with backup help from cellist, Jenny Hsu with very little trouble. The quintet seemed more comfortable with themselves on stage and not as awkward with their stunning second album, “Tamer Animals.” The OK act came out swinging belting out their best material knowing their was very little wiggle room for mistakes, and delivered a knock-out punch by the second song into their set. The crowd’s interest had been pique, allowing for the Okies to do become a bit improvisational than the last go around.
Radiohead doesn’t need an introduction. Any accolades ever set forth have been crushed by the veteran UK band. In hindsight, it could’ve been easy for them to crawl in a hole and never come out after “Pablo Honey.” Each release since then has shown how much the guys have grown as musicians, along with their fans. Radiohead has slithered on that border that exists between bat-shit and genius for so long, that any future releases will be considered as avant-garde. The “KOL” material is just as blippy live as it is on your headphones, but louder. Obvs. The tamer tracks, like “Give Up the Ghost” and “Codex” are where Radiohead shines best. That material has me hoping that Thom will follow his Neil Young love into making their own “Harvest Moon.” Don’t get me wrong, I like the jazzy undertones on “Bloom” and the tidal wave that “Feral” brings, it’s just that it’s been so long that they’ve deviated from that center that I believe everybody uses; “OK Computer” is the band’s focal point.
Radiohead 1stBank Center 03.13.12 Setlist
02 Little By Little
03 The National Anthem/Hunting Bears
04 The Gloaming
05 Morning Mr Magpie
10 Karma Police
11 The Amazing Sounds Of Orgy
14 Lotus Flower
16 Street Spirit (Fade Out)
17 Weird Fishes/Arpeggi
18 There There
20 True Love Waits/Everything In Its Right Place
21 Give Up The Ghost