With The Bends having such strong cultural and critical preconceptions behind it, hearing the album from the perspective of a new lister can help cut through the pre-ordained narrative.
PopMatters begins its look back at Radiohead's The Bends today. Here we examine The Bends track by track, examining it from angles spanning the cultural to the theoretical.
For artists a big as Beyonce, U2, and Thom Yorke, the surprise album release model offers minimal risk and maximal reward. It's a paradigm that's sure to be replicated by others going forward.