Sunday, 21 October 2012

Everything In It's Right Place. RADIOHEAD in Manchester

As imperfect as I know my life is, everything seemed perfect that night.
Prior to this important event I concluded it would be better for everyone if I didn't think about it at all. The blend of excitement and nerves convinced me I would more than likely fall to my knees and weep at the thought of seeing RADIOHEAD (I now feel I can only refer to them in capital letters) I was not only afraid of a public breakdown to the likes of High and Dry and No Surprises (luckily they were left of the setlist meaning I was more emotionally stable than anticipated) however I was mainly terrified of not believing the concert was real, after a traumatic out-of-body experience with The Cure that left me in 9 month disbelief.  Non the less this 'don't think about it till it's happening' approach proved very successful and resulted in one of the best nights I've ever known.

What I'm about to say next I barely believe, I feel Robert (and Jarvis and the Paul's) will somehow know, I almost feel I've been unfaithful but it just has to be said - Radiohead was the best gig of my entire life. I don't think I've ever felt the way I felt in that arena, or the way I still feel post-gig, and I don't want to ever stop feeling like this. The entire gig was otherworldly, I forgot anyone or anything else existed but the music Radiohead were playing and the feeling of joy and freedom it brought me. I'm aware this isn't making me sound very sane but it's difficult to convey how much seeing Radiohead live has awakened me to the power and intensity of their music. I've only been listening to them since 2010 and although I straightaway knew their sound was something special and entirely their own, I would sometimes forget that I liked them. It's not been till during and after the gig that I've truly been taken by them - I am there now.

The concert itself (not just my feelings about it) was spectacular. An excellent blend of hits, new stuff and album tracks as well as beautifully enchanting and haunting songs like Give Up The Ghost, Pyramid Song and The Daily Mail but also aggressive, gripping songs such as Myxomatosis, Feral and of course the magnificent Paranoid Android. An unforgettable, special moment for me was the magical In Rainbows homage of Nude, Weird Fishes/Apreggi and the blissful Reckoner. In Rainbows is and always has been from the first listen. one of my 3 favourite albums of all time. Something about the dreamlike fragility of that album instantly formed a personal connection with me that has only grown with each listen, so to hear songs from it live felt like a blessing, one I can't explain.

Undoubtedly I think the best moment for me has to be the end. The mystical and exceedingly poignant Everything In It's Right Place merging seamlessly into the pounding and incredible Idioteque. Never had the lyrics"This is really happening" been so appropriate. These final songs were somehow able to encapsulate the overwhelming strength and perfection of the entire gig as I was left feeling enriched, wholesome and very, very lucky. Overall I think Radiohead have illuminated all that is beautiful in my life.