Hail To The Thief

  • Record Label: Capitol
  • Release Date: Jun 10, 2003
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 564 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 13 out of 564

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  1. Jul 21, 2012
    10
    My first non-immediate album back in the day. There There worked from the first listen, but the rest of the album seemed boring on first hand and my teenage mind didn't expect patience to be rewarded, but through repeated listenings I came to understand what a deep and pertinent yet abstract work of art this is. You'll see imperfections at first, quirks later on, and by the crucial listenMy first non-immediate album back in the day. There There worked from the first listen, but the rest of the album seemed boring on first hand and my teenage mind didn't expect patience to be rewarded, but through repeated listenings I came to understand what a deep and pertinent yet abstract work of art this is. You'll see imperfections at first, quirks later on, and by the crucial listen you will see charisma and strength. Expand
  2. Sep 28, 2012
    9
    Super album. You will find a lot of things. Rock and piano ballads with a slight touch of electronic music. It's a very original sound, and the lyrics are deep and poetic.
  3. Mar 6, 2013
    9
    I put this album as Radiohead's 4th best album and it is excellent. It has tons of songs which is rare on a Radiohead album. This is their darkest album in terms of tone and lyrics. It can get borderline uncomfortable on tracks like "Suck Young Blood", "Wolf at the Door", "Myxamatosis" but like all Radiohead albums, more and more listens offer revelations and satisfaction. HTTT hasI put this album as Radiohead's 4th best album and it is excellent. It has tons of songs which is rare on a Radiohead album. This is their darkest album in terms of tone and lyrics. It can get borderline uncomfortable on tracks like "Suck Young Blood", "Wolf at the Door", "Myxamatosis" but like all Radiohead albums, more and more listens offer revelations and satisfaction. HTTT has classic songs Go To Sleep, There There, 2 2 5, Sit Down. Stand Up) and true to form there is one absolute dud (Gloaming). This album isn't warm and inviting like earlier efforts and thats the point. Like the metal band Tool said once, "finding beauty in the dissonance". Expand
  4. Apr 14, 2014
    10
    a great album of variations, is an miz of Kid A and OK Computer, but only one, agreat album of pure rock, and melodies full of feelings, recomedated for everyone
  5. Jul 24, 2014
    9
    Here is my track by track, but first; this album is all the things that make Radiohead loveable channeled into one cohesive body of work, with great songs and a sound that is distinctly theirs. It would be one of their best, but the 56-minute runtime is not supported with enough variety to carry it through. It's still nice to see them so in their own, and though it may be a littleHere is my track by track, but first; this album is all the things that make Radiohead loveable channeled into one cohesive body of work, with great songs and a sound that is distinctly theirs. It would be one of their best, but the 56-minute runtime is not supported with enough variety to carry it through. It's still nice to see them so in their own, and though it may be a little self-indulgent for them, I can't help but love it. A significant chapter in their career. (Note: All track-by-track ratings are in context to the album; a 5 here might be a 4 elsewhere or vice versa.)
    2+2=5 (5/5)
    One of Radiohead's best openers to date, then slow-moving jazz-influenced number evolves into a paranoid punk rock anthem, then screeches to a halt.
    Sit Down, Stand Up (5/5)
    A haunting yet beautiful melody exhibits Thom Yorke's political paranoia; the instrumentation builds until the song is drowned out in a roar of white noise. Radiohead in their essence.
    Sail To The Moon (5/5)
    Another win for HTTT! the third in a masterful opening sequence this drifts along with the ease of a 50's ballad. The classical picking adds to the daydream effect, and it serves as the calm after the storm!
    Back Drifts (4/5)
    Though a little over-extended this song has killer bass, and the beat keeps the pulse of the song moving, even when it's broke the 4-minute mark. A little more variety would have been nice though...
    Go To Sleep (3.5/5)
    While it's rock feel fits well in the midst of an electronic wasteland, it's easily forgettable, and lacks the characteristics of the other songs. Not a disappointment just not a jackpot either!
    Where I End (4.5/5)
    A pick-me-up, this song represents the album's sound quite nicely. While not quite as spectacular as the opening three it's very pop, though quite dark, and it keeps the album moving.
    We Suck Young Blood (2.5/5)
    If Where I End kept the album moving, then this was a major road block, tripping it up with a ridiculously slow tempo, and a slightly repetitive structure. Elements of it have potential but as it's whole it's a bore.
    The Gloaming (5/5)
    I don't know why I like this song so much- it's the waterfall drip maybe, or it's the fact that it breathes life into the album after "WSYB". Though I may be over-rating it it flows well and it's a good side opener.
    There There (3.5/5)
    Often regarded as the album's best track I disagree, but believe it's a good catchy song. Not quite a 5, because I rarely feel the urge to play it, and it's a little too slow, but far from filler.
    I Will (4/5)
    I Will on it's own is far from a massive accomplishment. But when viewed as the intro to Drunken Punch-Up, as there is no break in between, it's brilliant and contributes to the album in mood and variety.
    Drunken Punch-up (5/5)
    And they're back. The album's building up steam before it ends and this jazz fusion pop-fest is no exception. It manages to be dark, complex and fun all at the same time.
    Myxomatosis (5/5)
    Also rocks. the album's over all slow tempo is sped up a little in a catchy and vibrant jam comparable to a track off THE BENDS, or Bodysnatchers off IN RAINBOWS.
    Scatterbrain (3/5)
    It's beautiful, and the lick would be heart-breaking, but it meanders, and the album would be just fine without it. WSYB & this could be removed to make an amazing and way shorter album.
    Wolf At The Door (5/5)
    Radiohead always have the best closers. Always. The abstract poetic lyrics, incredibly melodic chorus and almost hip-hop influenced verse serves to make a total masterstroke!
    Expand
  6. May 16, 2015
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Radiohead's sixth record is sort of a return to form. A work in which guitars, bass, drums and a overall "normal-hearing" rock sound returns.. with of course the same unique tunes and originality typical of the british band. Thom Yorke gave the album a very heavy political feel, with songs like 2 + 2 = 5 that refer to George Orwell's 1984 or Knives Out. It's a good LP with some killer tracks like the 2 mentioned before or There There. I believe the only problem it has is that aside from few great gems, there aren't that many incredbile songs as other records like Ok Computer, The Bends or Kid A. It's a good album, but it feels like Radioheads did not gave 100% of their talent.. a feeling that instead is totally absent in the later and more mature work, In Rainbows. Expand
  7. Jun 24, 2015
    10
    My favourite album from my favourite band, I still can't understand the crtizims that it gets. I really think there is not one single song that is not great in Hail To The Thief, they all work great by themself but work so much better alltogether. I strongly recomend the Collectors Edition which includes "Where bluebirds fly" one of their best songs. I also think the best artwork done byMy favourite album from my favourite band, I still can't understand the crtizims that it gets. I really think there is not one single song that is not great in Hail To The Thief, they all work great by themself but work so much better alltogether. I strongly recomend the Collectors Edition which includes "Where bluebirds fly" one of their best songs. I also think the best artwork done by Stanley Donwood is the one used in this album. Expand
  8. Jul 15, 2015
    9
    For my first review on albums, I picked one of my favourites: Hail To The Thief, by Radiohead. Its got some pretty good hits on there, one of my personal favourites being There There. A must-listen for rockers everywhere.
  9. May 10, 2016
    8
    Radiohead brings back their rock sensibilities for their 6th album. Though not as commercial as OK Computer or The Bends, Hail to The Thief offers fantastic melodies, piano fueled ballads and the lushness of Thom Yorke's voice. Download: We Suck Young Blood, 2+2=5, I Will, Sail to the Moon.
  10. Jan 14, 2017
    9
    This album, I think, is the most underrated Radiohead album by far. It has 14 songs, 4-6 more than most Radiohead albums. Each song works very well together, and I love that they were able to move in a direction uniquely different from Kid A and Amnesiac. Some of the songs, I'll admit, take strides nearly too big away from what we usually can expect from a Radiohead record. BUT the songsThis album, I think, is the most underrated Radiohead album by far. It has 14 songs, 4-6 more than most Radiohead albums. Each song works very well together, and I love that they were able to move in a direction uniquely different from Kid A and Amnesiac. Some of the songs, I'll admit, take strides nearly too big away from what we usually can expect from a Radiohead record. BUT the songs that are great on this album are truly outstanding. The biggest missteps being, "Sit Down, Stand Up," "We Suck Young Blood," and "I Will." However, in the context of what this album is trying to do (in my mind, write a soundtrack in the same thematic vein as "Animal Farm") each track builds to complete whole that makes sense. This is not supposed to be a concept album like, "OK Computer," or "Kid A," --no, this is supposed to be hard to listen to because the emotions are so difficult and complex to perceive in the first place. If you love Radiohead already, or looking for a place to start, "Hail to the Thief" is as good as any other Radiohead album. Expand
  11. Jan 23, 2017
    10
    Love this style of Radiohead. One of my favorite albums from them. A style that I've grown to love from them and one I continue to expect. It's hard not to let albums let this, from Radiohead, make you get fully entrenched in the music.
Metascore
85

Universal acclaim - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. Q Magazine
    70
    As admirable as Radiohead's quest ongoing quest to ignore expectations, tear up the manual and proudly rebel against the limitations of 4/4 time seems, some of Hail To The Thief comes dangerously close to being all experimentalism and precious little substance. [Jul 2003, p.98]
  2. Of course it's political, and of course it continues to merge electronic experimentation with more familiar rock structures; but it employs all those debate-igniting props simply to further the band's more pressing agenda: to tirelessly explore beauty's terrible fragility.
  3. Hail to the Thief is overloaded with miraculous sounds.