AOTY 2021
Radiohead - In Rainbows
Critic Score
Based on 28 reviews
2007 Ratings: #2 / 682
Year End Rank: #1
User Score
2007 Ratings: #1
Liked by 436 people
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The Skinny

With sumptuous, enveloping production, fluid guitars soaked in reverb, and Yorke's voice at its most soulful, In Rainbows is Radiohead's leanest, warmest and most accessible record in a decade. 

The Guardian

The most heartening thing about In Rainbows, besides the fact that it may represent the strongest collection of songs Radiohead have assembled for a decade, is that it ventures into new emotional territories.

Entertainment Weekly

Using the full musical and emotional spectra to conjure breathtaking beauty, the collection is well named. It may have arrived via computer, but the vision is timeless.

NOW Magazine

It's true that we've come to expect a certain level of genius from this band, but when they actually exceed expectations, as they do here, it's a clear sign that Radiohead will continue to reinvent themselves and drop more jaws along the way.


The most pleasing thing about this Radiohead album is that it truly is a Radiohead album. It’s a band effort with instrumentation in its finest form from those who are refusing to sit in the background behind Thom Yorke.

Q Magazine

It arrived by unconventional means, but it's their most conventional work in a decade. And their best.


Radiohead's sudden willingness to embrace their capacity for uncomplicated beauty might be In Rainbows' most distinguishing quality, and one of the primary reasons it's an improvement on Hail to the Thief.

A.V. Club

This is still the Radiohead that finds straight-ahead pop structures gauche or just plain tired ... That said, In Rainbows takes tenuous steps back toward more straightforward territory, though with nothing as obvious as a verse-chorus-verse to speak of.


Packed but sparse, thrilling, complex, innovative, simple. Without even a dud bar never mind a filler track, In Rainbows is more than any fan could hope for.


Once you get in, and Radiohead invites us in here more than any other time in its career, the album proves itself to be what we all thought Radiohead couldn’t make again: a masterpiece.


In Rainbows will hopefully be remembered as Radiohead's most stimulating synthesis of accessible songs and abstract sounds, rather than their first pick-your-price download.

No Ripcord

In Rainbows ... comes from a more composed place in their personal and musical pantheon, creating an unassuming but worthy addition to their revered discography.


To the casual listener ‘In Rainbows’ is exactly what you’d expect from Radiohead; intelligent, satisfyingly thought-provoking and sure to be lauded by all who appreciate the less conventional. For the fans it’s the latest evolution of something really rather special. 

Rolling Stone

No wasted moments, no weak tracks:just primo Radiohead.

Under The Radar

While it will undoubtedly disappoint fans still pining for OK Computer’s flashes of unhinged chaos, it is a mature statement that shows the band as capable of penning lush and affecting music as ever.

Coke Machine Glow

Refracted through the prism of pure pop songcraft, Radiohead sound as ephemeral and variegated as ever, flowering and streaming and as big as the light our eyes can catch.


This is a grownup album, made for grownups. It’s the sort of record Nick Hornby could have enjoyed without all of his Kid A angst about being too old to interpret a record’s cryptic signs.

Time Out London

As these ten songs stand, the ’Head remain doggedly experimental but they’ve added a mainline to the heart as well as the brain, chilling and warming in equal measure with orchestral magic, Aphex-y ambience and a futuro-rock masterpiece.


After a decade of taking apart rock songs to find out how they work, these technophobic gearheads are ready to start putting them back together again.


Despite the amalgamation of styles, a technique employed on Hail to the Thief as well, In Rainbows sounds surprisingly focused, as the album possesses its own distinctive qualities.

American Songwriter

Thom Yorke and company have never stopped writing good songs-and this is even more apparent on In Rainbows, a seamless mash-up of the many Radioheads that have been unearthed over the years.


By entertaining this merest glimpse of light in their customary shade, Radiohead seem to have found fresh purpose and life.


In Rainbows is like a sigh of relief, a pre-apocalyptic album that’s obviously the work of a full band. It’s the sound of Radiohead funneling everything they’ve learned about space and timing and digital enhancement back into melodic, accessible songs.

The Line of Best Fit

Its short, and sweeter than anything they’ve offered in the past. Yorke’s voice has never sounded better. Whilst not their best, it is a worthy addition to their catalogue.

Tiny Mix Tapes

Sure, Yorke's not directly singing about music as commodity or industry politics, but what In Rainbows will always signify is just that.

Slant Magazine

As with almost every Radiohead album, there are moments of brilliance, inventiveness, and surprise.

Record Collector

Ultimately the songs aren’t quite there. Each has a moment of greatness, but it is often lost in Radiohead’s desire to either build to climax or not build at all.

in rainbows by radiohead was released on october 10th which means it's automatically 10/10
okay, first off: radiohead’s drummer philip selway absolutely went off for this album; ‘in rainbows’ goes. the alliteration, elements, emotions, shifting speed, syncopation, textures.. everything works.

it’s insane how quality and well thought out this project is.

while quickly vocalizing the brief phrase “as your bad day disappears”, Yorke sings the ‘d’ sound/syllable thrice! yet it sounds only once because it’s so fast. he’s ... read more
In Rainbows by Radiohead. The final album in the mega trio widely considered their best work, this record is quite different from its predecessors. A much more upbeat beginning leads into a more introspective and mellow middle ground, which leads into a very depressive backside. Now, although In Rainbows is probably the least important album of the trio (the trio, of course, being: Ok Computer, Kid A, and In Rainbows), it is actually my favorite. Sure, OK Computer changed rock as we know it... ... read more

Anyone who dislikes this album can fight me. It may not be Radiohead's most innovative or important album, but it's without a doubt their most enjoyable and gorgeous (sorry AMSP). In Rainbows is one of the few records I can play on repeat and not get tired of. A true classic.
Pure magic
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