Slight of Hand, Jump Off the End: Radiohead, The King Of Limbs.

This time last week the thought of an impending full Radiohead release was distinctly distant. This time this week, unless you were residing in a war-ravaged realm of the world bereft of internet this morning, Thom Yorke et al. will have cropped up on your radar through the medium of culture, for today of all days, culture is Radiohead and Radiohead is culture. British culture.

Singlehandedly overhauling the Twitter trending chart, The King Of Limbs, the Oxford troupe's first in four years since the online fracas incurred by the subtly sublime In Rainbows and its cost, or lack of, provides something of a brief history to..., a stringent rhythm section coursing vivaciously behind Yorke's surrealist lyrical musings throughout. Coined as everything from Kid B to the purloining of much of the disquieting Hail To The Thief, there's little to no need for progression when it comes to questionably Britain's greatest band of all eternity, as they instead opt to rework and rewire previous experimentalism and instrumental intricacies with unflinching sangfroid. Why reinvent the wheel when you're the only one capable of making it roll?

That said however, opener Bloom sees mangled Erik Satie piano flutter and flounce with rounded free-jazz bass line that bounds with Cosmogramma swagga atop rattling snare before evolving into soaring orchestral chorus, finally blossoming in exuberant brass fanfare. The tempo is then jump-started with the introduction of Morning Mr Magpie, a bloodthirsty sequel to McCartney's Blackbird were it conceived in Hadean wasteland as semi-acoustic twangs are entangled with Yorke's weatherbeaten warble urging: "You know you should" and forever more frenzied backdrop throb from Philip Selway. Denouement cacophony then kicks in alongside reverb-stricken vox, before Little By Little emerges amidst flowing mellow guitar cascade now, seemingly, almost instinctively flushed from Jonny Greenwood's Fender arsenal. Arabesque reverse delay refrains underpin the surging melee, Yorke ominously seething: "Little by little, hook or by crook. I'm such a tease and you're such a flirt", as if crooning through gritted teeth. Feral, meanwhile, with its vocal contortions and underpass synth swathes, is distinctly contemporary and were its BPM substantially pruned could seamlessly infiltrate Blake's Klavierwerke EP of yesteryear, again Selway's contribution its most ferocious component. Headphone-rattling bass distortion last bashed out on Bangers and Mash then splurges down your internal ear ducts, before the eerie hush of Lotus Flower intervenes. Dwindling, downtuned bass synths linger portentously beneath chimerical keys as elongated vocal strains tell of egos inflating, of a "fast-ballooning head". The track will now be forever reminiscent of the morning of 18th February 2011 when a Garth Jennings-directed video of a possessed Yorke in a bowler hat was plastered all over social network, and it's a menacing slab of despondence as gruelling as the record's rather disconcerting artwork, as special as its oniric set of compositions.

Humming and howling, Codex provides the indubitable highlight, a 21st-century Fake Plastic Trees with the emotivity ratcheted up three-fold, five tear-jerking minutes of apocalyptic reassurance from Yorke as he soothes anxiety with lyrics of nobody getting hurt. Simplicity set to song, the ethereal piano plonks within are as moving as many a melodrama, as he impeccably, impressionably swoons: "Slight of hand, jump off the end. Into a clear lake..." almost suicidally. So crystalline, delivered with such clarity, it'll have your dreams launching insouciantly into distant azure waters tonight. Give Up The Ghost is something of an emotional comedown following on from the arduous, exhausting passion of Codex, a dulcet paradise inhabited by swirling vocals and comforting trumpets like hushed ripples lapping up against your four walls in the wake of ravaging tsunami. Then finally there's the elated hum of Separator, bread and butter drum pattern, unremitting throughout cultivating afrobeat guitar glimmers like flittering butterflies emerging from a dishevelled cocoon. However mundane it must be inhabiting the same greyscale pupal casing for days on end there's nothing even vaguely routine within The King Of Limbs, a record you'll want to enwrap yourself in for months and months.