Radiohead Kid A Kid A makes rock and roll childish. Considerations on its merits as "rock" (i.e. its radio fodder potential, its guitar riffs, and its hooks) are pointless. Comparing this to other albums is like comparing an aquarium to blue construction paper. And not because it's jazz or fusion or ambient or electronic. Classifications don't come to mind once deep inside this expansive, hypnotic world. Ransom, the philologist hero of C.S. Lewis' Out of the Silent Planet who is kidnapped and taken to another planet, initially finds his scholarship useless in his new surroundings, and just tries to survive the beautiful new world.
This is an emotional, psychological experience. Kid A sounds like a clouded brain trying to recall an alien abduction. It's the sound of a band, and its leader, losing faith in themselves, destroying themselves, and subsequently rebuilding a perfect entity. In other words, Radiohead hated being Radiohead, but ended up with the most ideal, natural Radiohead record yet. (review by Brent DiCrescenzo - Pitchfork)
Depending on your sensibilities, Kid A was the moment when Radiohead became either wilfully contrary and insufferably worthy (no single, no video, strictly no fun) or just about the only big band that mattered. Having suffered an allergic reaction to the conventions – both musical and personal – of stardom, they almost split up after OK Computer but instead settled on a "change everything" ethos, largely dispensing with guitars in favour of skittish rhythm and an electronic sound palette inspired by krautrock, free jazz and the more abstract end of hip-hop. By Graeme Thomson
Like many, I was eventually seduced by the textural loveliness of 1997’s OK Computer, not the techno-Orwellian alienation Yorke’s lyrics apparently depict. This time ‘round, Radiohead have plunged fully into sheer sonics. Starting with its opening tracks, Kid Aconfounds its role as the most-awaited alt-rock record of the year by thwarting the impulse to interpret or identify. By Simon ReynoldsRadiohead Kid A
Kid A sounds like a clouded brain trying to recall an alien abduction
This is an emotional, psychological experience