Review Summary: A great way for Radiohead fans everywhere to get more Radiohead
1996 was a different time for Radiohead. Though they had garnered international attention with the hit single ‘Creep’, those paying careful attention acknowledged that The Bends
, the beginning of producer Nigel Godrich’s tenure with the band, was more carefully constructed and mature than their debut LP Pablo Honey
. But still, this is before Ok Computer
, meaning this was before Radiohead had been lauded with accolades from fans and critics, and before they had made a pair of albums that were each more shocking and innovative than the next. In short, the Street Spirit (Fade Out)
EP is largely ignored because of all that Radiohead was about to accomplish.
Yet this little EP was as profound a step forward for the band as The Bends
. Standout track “Talk Show Host” first sees the light of day here and all the motions it manages to bottle up and contain come along with it. Irking us, moving us and giving us that ever-present longing for harmony amongst discord, it is unsurprisingly regarded as one of the band’s finest releases ever.
However the title track manages to take an even greater effect on the band and the rest of us. “All these things into position, all these things will one day swallow whole” bellows Thom, who has claimed the emotional toll taken whenever he plays this song is so great that even today he has to disconnect entirely from it just to sing it. But that doesn’t manage to make the band stop sounding beautiful and pure throughout.
The EP is rounded out by a trio of solid though much more straightforward releases, any of which could have taken the place of any of the lesser tracks off their previous LP. If anything, the tension built up and surrendered during the progression of ‘Molasses’ makes it particularly notable. But at just over 17 minutes, and with the EP’s marquee tracks being released on other records, this is not an essential listen. Still, it’s a great way for Radiohead fans everywhere to get more Radiohead.
’Street Spirit' is about staring the fucking devil right in the eyes... and knowing, no matter what the hell you do, he'll get the last laugh...and it's real...and true”
( http://www.last.fm/user/j2thezee26/journal/2010/03/09/3h2fqe_thom_yorke_interview-_%22street_spirit%22 )