New Radiohead Album: The King of Limbs – Yours on February 19

by Jonathan on February 14, 2011

Woah. Radiohead just announced their new album, The King of Limbs. We don’t know the tracklist yet, but the album will be released on February 19th. Yep, 5 days from now.

There are two options:

Newspaper Album

  • Two clear 10″ vinyl records in a purpose-built record sleeve.
  • A compact disc.
  • Many large sheets of artwork, 625 tiny pieces of artwork and a full-colour piece of oxo-degradeable plastic to hold it all together.
  • The Newspaper Album comes with a digital download that is compatible with all good digital media players.
  • The Newspaper Album will be shipped on Monday 9th May 2011 you can, however, enjoy the download on Saturday 19th February 2011.
  • Shipping is included in the prices shown.
  • One lucky owner of the digital version of The King Of Limbs, purchased from this website, will receive a signed 2 track 12″ vinyl.

Digital Only

  • MP3 version is a 320K constant bit rate file.
  • WAV version is a full CD quality uncompressed digital audio file.
  • One lucky owner of the digital version of The King Of Limbs, purchased from this website, will receive a signed 2 track 12″ vinyl.

For more information about pre-ordering, head on over to http://www.thekingoflimbs.com/



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  • kinbote

    Yes. It’s the best band on the planet putting out an album. This is what money exists for.

  • kinbote

    Yes. It’s the best band on the planet putting out an album. This is what money exists for.

  • Anonymous

    single trackfiles in one zip probably

  • 420

    does anybody know if you can download it on midnight on friday? wondering whether to organise a radiohead sesh on friday or satruday.

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  • Arpeggi

    So that means 4pm on the west coast on Friday right?

  • Kenshin Himura

    I really hope so

  • Anything you want!

    Note to Radiohead or their web developers: “S.E. Asia” is not Japan, the Koreas, China and Taiwan. Actually those are called East (or “E.” if you like) Asia. “S.E.” or South East Asia is Burma/Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Brunei, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. And East Timor, perhaps, but I dunno.

    I am beyond excited for this album, but I have friends in East and South East Asia who are at least as much so. I hope sometime in the course of the upcoming tour, if there is one, the favorite band of so many in both these regions says it’s time to pay a repeat visit, which perhaps might refresh their geography. As musicians at least, they last set foot in the continent of Asia, excluding Israel and the island of Japan, 17 years ago, when the Internet barely existed, and before the WTO was established or the British Empire officially ended. Let’s just say it feels like long ago, some of the changes for the worse, and many for the better.

    I do not mean to denigrate the band’s constant commitment to their many Japanese fans, nor their choice to play in Israel (whose fans had helped “break” the band in the first place, and which is home to Jonny’s wife) in summer 2000, when the Labour government seemed to be negotiating peace. But if anyone 17 years ago could’ve seriously argued Japan, not to mention Israel, were the heart of Asia, culturally, economically, in terms of population, or even as a central geographic location, it would be all the harder now. I don’t even mention the Indian subcontinent, whose hugely advanced income and infrastructure are still so inconsistent and stratified by class that I sort of understand why fewer western bands play there. And I know Radiohead had bad experiences on the Pablo Honey tour’s “third world” sections, both in Mexico and Thailand, not because they are an elitist or racist band, but the opposite: Thom had been an armchair philosopher relatively sheltered from the realities of inequality and the scary pace of what became known as globalization, before that tour, and he and Ed, the most progressive members of the band, both talked about how difficult it was for them to feel like powerless parts of some economic machine of continuing MTV exploitation, as they were faced with things reading had not prepared them for. But in 2009 they put some of those demons to rest in Latin America. Although the shows were still overpriced in the sense of excluding poor citizens of a continent historically less well-off than their own, I think unlike in ’94 they recognized that these people were real fans of their music, not just a few trendy rich kids (Radiohead searches remain more popular in Spanish-speaking countries than anywhere else, according to Google Trends) and that as artists, for better or worse their audiences have often tilted more to relatively privileged uni-educated people like themselves than to those who couldn’t afford such education, both elsewhere and, increasingly, here in the global North and West, but that they did not create these inequalities themselves, and therefore should not worry who listens as long as they put all the necessary care into their songs, which quietly and subversively challenge us to agitate for a better world.

    What had been difficult for them in 1994 was partly due to their musical and lyrical immaturity and rather self-centered music at that time, as well, which they have long left behind. A lot of the very early stuff really was about nothing more than post-adolescent Thom Yorke’s sexual hangups and naive cries for everyone to free themselves from the phoniness of the “cathode ray” (though not, by any means, all of it- see the On a Friday Gulf War protest song Burning Bush, and the Marxist critique of Coke- as in Diet- Babies, or the United Fruit-referencing, if vague, Banana Co.) Moreover, in a way I think the complexity of their entire post-1993 career has been a response to some of the things they briefly witnessed on those difficult ’94 tours, beginning with their self-critical rewrite of an old song that turned into “Maquiladora” after seeing Mexico. Of course, it was still a b-side, and other important songs like Fake Plastic Trees came out of social and economic changes Thom was witnessing in his own backyard of England, as it financialized itself into nothingness. At the same time, such a song, or Street Spirit- which had actually been inspired by Ben Okri’s horrifying vision of the monster of “development” in slum-city outgrowths of Lagos, Nigeria- were in some very unique way for pop hits- and I think this explains Radiohead’s global popularity as much as anything amazing in their sounds- not merely emotionally universal global kumbayas, but cries of emotion specifically relevant to a process of change- referenced even in the very first lines quoted in this site’s name about the “fake Chinese rubber plant”- which began with colonialism, picked up pace with industrialization, spread with the great wars, most of all the final victory in the Cold one, and finally meant most of us who could understand the English of such songs were by the late ’90s living in societies whose erased lives, land and memory, hyperreal bright future, and inarticulable sense of loss their lyrics seemed to have always already responded to, no less applicable in “poor” than “rich” countries. So, as much as some people see Radiohead as a band offering a uniquely British outlook on the angst of loveless consumer society on albums like The Bends and OKC, or critiquing explicitly western militaries, governments and corporations and the fear and complacency that helps empower them on later work, or even, on In Rainbows, appearing to withdraw from engaging with a world wider than the human heart and brain and need for others… as much as there is lots of truth to those ways of seeing, I see all of them as connected, and all of them, even (imo) their strongest single summation in the ten songs of IR, as part and parcel of a world that has increasingly taken on the character of a single, badly diseased social body, with no brain other than profit motive and a universal heart so clogged with fat and pollution and excess of fear that none of its parts- our individual cells, as the heart is made up of humanity- even recognize ourselves as parts of the whole, and, in our private fears and insecurities, we have more and more withdrawn into our physical limitations, and even as we dream more and more of each other, and imagine we can be unified, we feel forced by the ever-greater intrusions into our well being to defend our own little cells of the heart by attacking other heart cells, other people, when our enemy is in the brain only, now unified with a damaging universal software, which is destroying the body we all inhabit (earth) faster than we can even understand. As far as “seduction songs” like Nude, Reckoner and House of Cards had a story, that’s a lot of it to me- the story of our bittersweet distractors, our next to meaningless friends and unfriends, noncommittal blowjobs, and above all, the biggest individualist idea in our heads, the repressed, self-hating recognition of our own mortality and sense of aloneness that such are all stifled screams against, the resulting fried brain’s demanding we accumulate money or fucks or some kind of ethereal “content” to arrest our destruction, concurrent (and often metaphorical, if you want, or at least, coincidental) with the big ideas of those who we feel have more power than we, but who rely on us to do it: wars, financial speculation, property bubbles, free trade deals that destroy of our jobs, turn all of us into whores even as we’re up on cloud 9, Temptations style.

    Alternately, I could say, hopefully less pretentiously, that Radiohead on all their post-Pablo work so far have described an emotional reality that, more even than in Europe and America, you see in Asia, because it has “developed” toward the industrial/postindustrial continuum later and, not only exponentially faster, but involving significantly more people, and because whereas hundreds of years have still not allowed Europe and America to adjust to these changes, nor should they have in many cases (since the problems of traditional societies should not blind us to the fact, as Blur said, that “modern life is rubbish”), in much of Asia the adjustment has been forced to occur over a few short decades. The 19th century was the dawn of western industrialization and the peak of urbanization, but in the entire 19th century in the entire European continent including Britain and Russia, fewer people moved from countryside to cities than they did just in one decade, the 1980s, in a single country, China. Since there are artistic representations by Chinese and other Asian people of their own and all of our changing societies which to me are as prophetic and personally affecting as anything Radiohead have recorded, if not more (i.e. Jia Zhangke and Tsai Ming-liang’s films, for two examples) it’s not that Asia is in need of Radiohead, who exhibit little interest overtly in the region, to represent it. At the same time, globalization goes both ways now in the ways that are worst for all of us, and I think we can also hope it goes both ways in the sense of art that helps us respond positively, not submissively. Hopefully Radiohead’s new work will go even further in that direction than their old, and in that case, we’ll all need things like it.

    I’d happily accept if their touring days must be over for environmental or family reasons, but if they were to “tour the world” again and not come to Asia other than Japan, that would not actually be touring the world, in 2011, and it would be a shame. Speaking as a North American, I may not have seen them as often as I wish, and some of us may never have seen them at all. But with the kind of tours they’ve mounted here, we’ve almost all had some chance, unless we’re very young. Of course lots of Asians (and Africans, and lest we forget, Russians- where they have also never been!) have had chances too, if they were able to travel to Japan, Aus/NZ (which they also tour too rarely) or Europe or America. Not everyone is able to afford that though, in terms of money or free time, on top of the expense of a concert ticket, nor is such traveling any better for the planet if it happens on a large scale (which it does with Radiohead, cause fans are committed) than if Radiohead themselves toured a wider range of countries. Finally, it is a mark of respect to the fans of a country for them to play there, as well as an opportunity for meetings that could lead to more important things even than seeing Radiohead. Even in Latin America there are more opportunities to sing to and with people, in Central America, in Peru. But Asia is where they have the most huge discrepancy between popularity and number of shows. They have never been to mainland China- where their Tibet advocacy would unfortunately make that unlikely to change- nor to S. Korea, the Philippines, Indonesia or Malaysia, or even Singapore, whose official language has always been English. They have not even played Hong Kong since ’94, though it remains both culturally connected to Britain, and at least as politically free as it was in the late colonial era (which is to say, at least there is still respect for free expression). In any case, for a band who gave extensive US tours at least four times during the presidency of George W. Bush, and have never spoken positively of their own PMs, I would like to think their view of fans in a country does not equal their feelings about its government. I’m sure many Iranians for instance would love for them to play there. But it’s much more realistic to ask why they don’t try “S.E. Asia.”

  • curry bear

    Also, $48 is pretty fair for the amount of content you’re getting, considering that you can listen to the 320kb version now, and then just rip the cd version yourself when your cd is shipped, so you can get the .wav files later.It takes a few months to fully appreciate a Radiohead album anyway, so you can deal with the mp3s until you get the other formats. 🙂

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  • ry

    at this point they could all shit in a cup and i’d buy it. music is subjective, but radiohead is just plain the best

  • Redlotus51

    W.A.S.T.E. tv, anyone?

  • Kaz

    Interesting post, not sure if radiohead read these comments but as always I’d be very curious to hear their thoughts on some of the subjects you mentioned.

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • ^^

    Does anyone think that because they iterate on the king of limbs purchase site that you will be downloading “a [an]” MP3 file because it may be one long track? And that the 2 LPs may either have different music than the MP3 version or be separations of the track into movements? And perhaps the compact disk contains “b-sides,” which may be all the tracks thom yorke has been playing live (present tense, etc.)? This has kind of been the album of secrets and tells so far, maybe they did something like this. Anyway, this would equal Radiohead heaven (for me).

    What does anyone else think?

  • Myrrhman

    I am hoping they do something completely, completely different. Away from the ‘song’ structure, towards an ‘album’ structure (which is why I like Kid A so much). The artwork and press photo seem to suggest them moving in a different direction, which is great! And indeed, the b-side release you are talking about would seem very plausible.

  • Myrrhman

    I am hoping they do something completely, completely different. Away from the ‘song’ structure, towards an ‘album’ structure (which is why I like Kid A so much). The artwork and press photo seem to suggest them moving in a different direction, which is great! And indeed, the b-side release you are talking about would seem very plausible.

  • Anonymous

    It’s actually just a cover album. That’s why they’re doing the newspaper thing, it is a complete cover of Jethro Tull’s “Thick As A Brick” album.

  • Myrrhman

    That would be so awesome.

  • Myrrhman

    That would be so awesome.

  • Kyosti_23

    i really hope they do something on radiohead.tv – you know, as long as I’m not at work while they’re doing it! It’s going an exciting new few weeks.

  • Uptown

    Brevity, my friend. Brevity.

  • Ssketis

    come to papa!!!

  • Ssketis

    it is defenetly the next hail to the thief!!!!

  • Lightfigure

    omfg…. it is time for the radiohead freak show…. i like the damn shit.
    Greetings from faraway Germany

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  • Strummerisgod1

    Why not check both? I have made the rounds so much that I actually had a dream about going on DAS and seeing a new album announcement THE NIGHT BEFORE they actually did it.

  • Email

    It’s out now !!!

  • Radiohead

    no you havent

  • delio

    id have to reread again this post as i might have not been able to understand some parts as at my level of understanding right this moment …its quite heavy…
    bottom line what its telling me is that …..i am not alone to have feel the way this post states….that the guys (my 90’s hero ) should consider visiting Philippines….
    im not sure how much the tickets cost……but if its less than the price of a visa/passport/airplane ticket ride./ hotel ///….never in this limited existence i would pass on this…..

    Hey RDHD..
    hey
    iam here
    hey kid
    im here
    can you sing to me to….

    id like to wallow in it
    sitting on our native carabao grass.
    ….God.

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