"Constant Shallowness Leads to Evil" is the title of Coil's latest album. I couldn't agree more, but sometimes self-proclaimed seriousness can lead to some nasty deeds too. Just look at Radiohead. With their new album "Kid A" they've swallowed the myth about themselves as an "inventive" and "important" band, and made a record that is so full of pompous pretension that it almost implodes.
Taking their inspiration mainly from the Warp sound and the Miles Davis milestone "Bitches Brew", Radiohead's aim seems to be to break out of the rock barriers. But their music falls terribly short, and not only because this has been done much better before. Compare the directionless, jazz octet-featured "National Anthem" with the raging black hole that is experimental era Miles Davis and it come across as embarrassingly safe and banal. Elsewhere, the mechanical sub-Autechre rhythms of "Idioteque" almost make you forget that it's actually a good song.
This record will make a lot of middle-aged rock journalists drop words like "daring" and "experimental" all around them. But I'm still young, and to me "Kid A" sounds more like two or three fairly good songs concealed within Radiohead's futile attempts to blueprint their newfound influences.