Last Night: Radiohead at Austin City Limits


I have spent the last 10 years of my life dedicated to my love of music and in that time I have seen some amazing shows. Thousands of them. But nothing will ever compare to last nights Radiohead performance at Austin City Limits. You could feel the energy going into the building and it was like no other taping I have experienced before. I can honestly say that the venue was filled with die hard fans comparing stories about how many times they had seen them before and how amazing it was to be there. It's also pretty intense when Robert Plant is in attendance.

When ACL producer Terry Lickona made it to the stage he mentioned how historic the taping was and how they had tried for years to book the band which was impressive given that he has been with the show since it's inception and they have hosted countless music legends over 38 seasons on the air. Needless to say when the band took the stage there were several tears in the crowd.


Opening up with "Bloom" and "Little By Little" from King of Limbs I think it was settled that they would be relying on material from the later albums. I knew this going into the taping as most artist that tape the show are usually "pushing" the new stuff and seeing them perform the songs live for the first time gave me a new appreciation for the latest album.

Of course this is Radiohead and just when you thing think you have them pegged they surprise you with something unexpected. After moving through tracks like Myxomatosis and The Gloaming they started off with "The Amazing Sounds of Orgy", a B-Side off the Pyramid Song UK 12" and Japanese versions of the release which Yorke commented was written when he "was obsessed with the banking system". He went on to mention that it disappeared "like a wet fart in the wind" but was now back. Pretty fitting.

From there they went on to perform a new B Side "Staircase" before moving on to material off In Rainbows with back to back performances of Reckoner and Arpeggi and then jumping back to a new song "Identikit". After that came "Lotus Flower" and I am sure everyone that has seen the video for the track was curious to see if he would dance and was pleasantly surprised when he did. After that came an unexpected surprise with "There, There" which I think was the highlight of an otherwise dreary album (Hail to the Thief) and the band closing off with the only track of the night off Kid A, "Idoiteque" which has grown even more impressive over time paired with the bands growth and direction.

The band received a very well deserved standing ovation and returned to the stage to thunderous applause. The crowd was in an obvious frenzy and Yorke said he would calm them down with the next  track because it was a mellow one and went into a new track "Skirting on the Surface" which even though an unfamiliar track to the crowd, could not have come at a more fitting time. As the band finished up someone yelled out CREEP! which got a laugh from both the crowd and the band who said that "wouldn't be happening" and that it was written a long time ago "when they were young and stupid" before breaking into the highlight of the night, "Paranoid Android", which is the best track off what is arguably one of the best albums of all time Ok Computer. The performance of that song won't make it on the show but it's something I won't soon forget.

Radiohead Setlist - Austin City Limits | March 6th, 2012

Bloom (King of Limbs)
Little By Little (King of Limbs)
Daily Mail (New)
Myxomatosis (Hail To The Thief)
Magpie (King Of Limbs)
The Gloaming (Hail To The Thief)
The Amazing Sound of Orgy (B-Side - Pyramid Song)
Staircase (New)
Reckoner (In Rainbows)
Arpeggi (In Rainbows)
Identikit (New)
Lotus Flower (King of Limbs)
There, There (Hail to the Thief)
Feral (King Of Limbs)
Idioteque (Kid A)

Encore

Skirting on the Surface (New)
Paranoid Android (OK Computer)

Round 2 Tonight.....