Anna Minard claims to "know nothing about music." For this column, we force her to listen to random records by artists considered to be important by music nerds.
Radiohead Kid A (Capitol)
I have a relationship to Radiohead that consists mainly of confusion and fear. I've heard of them, and I even went out and bought Pablo Honey when I was a teenager. I just didn't like it, and that was it. Then they became the Jesus of music and the world shitted itself every time they took another step, and it freaked me out. I never followed up—I used to avoid music that I thought I'd be embarrassed if I didn't understand. (I'm curing that impulse weekly now.)
When we started this column, I just assumed someone would eventually assign me Radiohead. Right?! But so far the contents have tended more toward old-school music learnin' and haven't caught up with the hip kids of the new millennium.
So I asked for it. Kid A was decreed, and I went home with determination (and some trepidation). It was a mostly silent sit-down couch listen; no running errands with headphones, no sorting laundry, no leaving the room for a minute. I listened to it like I was watching a movie, or waiting to be saved.