OK Computer

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September 1996 – March 1997
(St Catherine's Court,
Bath, Somerset, England)

OK Computer is the third studio album by English alternative rock band Radiohead, released on 16 June 1997. Radiohead recorded the album in rural Oxfordshire and Bath, during 1996 and early 1997, with producer Nigel Godrich. Although most of the music is dominated by guitar, OK Computer's expansive sound and wide range of influences set it apart from many of the Britpop and alternative rock bands popular at the time, and it laid the groundwork for Radiohead's later, more experimental work. While Radiohead do not consider OK Computer to be a concept album, its lyrics and visual artwork emphasise common themes such as consumerism, social disconnection, political stagnation, and modern malaise.

OK Computer reached number-one on the UK Albums Chart and marked Radiohead's highest entry into the American market at the time, debuting at number 21 on the Billboard 200. The album expanded the band's worldwide popularity, and has been certified triple platinum in the UK and Canada, double platinum in the US and platinum in Australia. OK Computer received considerable acclaim at the time of its release, and is frequently cited by critics as one of the greatest albums ever recorded.

Contents

Background

After the success of Radiohead's second album, The Bends (1995), the band decided to produce their third album themselves, although a number of producers, including Scott Litt, were offered a position to work on the album.[1] They were encouraged by recording sessions with engineer Nigel Godrich, who had assisted John Leckie in producing The Bends and had produced several Radiohead B-sides.[2] Bassist Colin Greenwood said "the only concept that we had for this album was that we wanted to record it away from the city and that we wanted to record it ourselves."[3] The band prepared for the recording sessions by buying their own recording equipment, though they consulted Godrich for advice on what to acquire. Godrich eventually outgrew this role and became co-producer on the album.[4]

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