^ On the flip side, though, you're being really obnoxious to merc for no apparent reason.
Taken in the context in which it was intended, The Bends is arguably as good as some of the other albums.
Merc probably doesn't like their later stuff because it completely abandoned the pop song format, which is fair enough. If you build a particular sound that people are used to, they're never very happy when you change it dramatically.
Personally The Bends was my favorite Radiohead album for a long time--these days it's probably either OK Computer or In Rainbows. Kid A is good but very overrated because it got so much critical praise at the time it came out that nobody stopped to notice that, hey wait, RADIOHEAD DIDN'T INVENT ELECTRONIC MUSIC.
But since they've been incorrectly credited with doing so for so long now, the frankly mediocre Amnesiac and the hardly-better-than-mediocre Hail to the Thief get rated way higher than they should, as well. Music critique is funny like that.
It's still a great album; it just doesn't deserve the level of gratuitous over-praise that it gets.
All is forgiven