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obsidianchrysalis
Member since Jan 29th 2003
5940 posts
Wed May-03-17 02:25 PM

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"Radiohead - OKNOTOK"


  

          

This is a collection of unreleased tracks from the OK Computer recording sessions back in '97.

I haven't heard this yet so I can't speak of the quality just yet.

http://radiohead.com

  

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Topic Outline
Subject Author Message Date ID
RE: Radiohead - OKNOTOK
May 03rd 2017
1
*my inner Radiohead fan* Only!?!?
May 03rd 2017
4
      Im totally with you, been wanting to hear Big Boots
May 04th 2017
7
I would like to have the journal notes and the artwork
May 03rd 2017
2
This is me. Copped the 'regular' vinyl a year back for 30 bucks
May 03rd 2017
3
*raises eyebrow*
May 03rd 2017
5
      This is a really good song.
May 03rd 2017
6
Radiohead cover story about OK Computer - RS swipe
Jun 01st 2017
8
Thanks for posting this.
Jun 01st 2017
9
      you're welcome
Jun 02nd 2017
10
      If you didn't know about Rachel, you should read up on "Daydreaming"
Jul 13th 2017
25
19 Things We Learned Hanging Out With Radiohead - RS swipe
Jun 08th 2017
11
I agree with this Jonny quote 100%
Jun 08th 2017
12
I think there is a "phase" aspect to that dynamic
Jun 08th 2017
13
naw.
Jun 08th 2017
14
      you're saying what I'm saying
Jun 08th 2017
15
      right on.
Jun 08th 2017
16
      lol
Jun 16th 2017
20
there is also the issue of the different pathways of
Jun 13th 2017
17
Thought this part was hilarious.
Jun 13th 2017
18
bookmark
Jun 15th 2017
19
Oral history of OK Computer - RS swipe
Jun 16th 2017
21
RE: Good ol' Nige:
Jun 16th 2017
22
Really enjoyed reading this
Jun 16th 2017
23
Could've read 3 more pages of this
Jul 16th 2017
27
      you're welcome
Jul 16th 2017
28
computer program fun - spin swipe
Jul 13th 2017
24
I love "Lift" so much
Jul 13th 2017
26
Got my box set yesterday
Jul 19th 2017
29

Nick Has a Problem...Seriously
Member since Dec 25th 2010
15874 posts
Wed May-03-17 03:03 PM

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1. "RE: Radiohead - OKNOTOK"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Really only 3 songs we haven't heard before. Might cop the double disc. Def not emptying my pockets for the vinyl.

****************************************
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"As soon as I saw "Goblin" ahead of "AmeriKKA's Most..." I closed the window. Nothing to see here." - mrhood75

https://www.discogs.com/user/nawynn79

  

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ArtVandelay
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Wed May-03-17 07:06 PM

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4. "*my inner Radiohead fan* Only!?!?"
In response to Reply # 1
Wed May-03-17 07:06 PM by ArtVandelay

  

          

It's Lift & Big Boots! Finally!!!

*breathes*


sorry




www.facebook.com/ActorsActresses
www.majorgames.bandcamp.com
www.reverbnation.com/sonaband

  

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natenate101
Member since Apr 21st 2015
473 posts
Thu May-04-17 10:33 AM

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7. "Im totally with you, been wanting to hear Big Boots"
In response to Reply # 4


          

For years and years. I'm just curious when the these versions were completed. Did they touch up the songs recently or are these old studio recordings the finally settled on?

  

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obsidianchrysalis
Member since Jan 29th 2003
5940 posts
Wed May-03-17 03:34 PM

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2. "I would like to have the journal notes and the artwork"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

The unreleased tracks are interesting probably, but they're likely not amazing songs because they would have been released or reworked for release later.

But I wouldn't pay the price their asking for it.

I bet it will be worth quite a bit as a collector's item.

  

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BigReg
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Wed May-03-17 04:19 PM

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3. "This is me. Copped the 'regular' vinyl a year back for 30 bucks"
In response to Reply # 2
Wed May-03-17 04:20 PM by BigReg

  

          

>The unreleased tracks are interesting probably, but they're
>likely not amazing songs because they would have been released
>or reworked for release later.
>
>But I wouldn't pay the price their asking for it.
>
>I bet it will be worth quite a bit as a collector's item.

So I might double dip since this one has the Airbag EP which has some of my fav Radiohead songs on it (Pearly, A Reminder) for the same price.

That boxset, for as awesome as it sounds, is HELLA cash and basically for hardcore fans only.

  

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ArtVandelay
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6599 posts
Wed May-03-17 07:09 PM

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5. "*raises eyebrow*"
In response to Reply # 2


  

          

>The unreleased tracks are interesting probably, but they're
>likely not amazing songs because they would have been released
>or reworked for release later.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3-4fK8h8ig

A lost classic

www.facebook.com/ActorsActresses
www.majorgames.bandcamp.com
www.reverbnation.com/sonaband

  

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obsidianchrysalis
Member since Jan 29th 2003
5940 posts
Wed May-03-17 08:50 PM

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6. "This is a really good song."
In response to Reply # 5


  

          

My Radiohead geekdom has faded over the years. But with this album being over 20 years old, and myself also being 20 years older, the music doesn't connect with me now as it did then. I'd probably buy it if they had released this package soon after the release tho.

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
8356 posts
Thu Jun-01-17 02:00 PM

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8. "Radiohead cover story about OK Computer - RS swipe"
In response to Reply # 0
Thu Jun-01-17 02:00 PM by c71

  

          

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/features/exclusive-thom-yorke-and-radiohead-on-ok-computer-w484570

Radiohead's Rhapsody in Gloom: 'OK Computer' 20 Years Later
Thom Yorke & Co. reveal how endless tours and recording in a haunted mansion informed their 1997 classic 'OK Computer'


By Andy Greene


Thom Yorke has four words of blunt advice for his younger, twitchier self, that paranoid twentysomething humanoid who made his band's turn-of-the-millennium masterpieces. "Lighten the fuck up," Yorke says, laughing hard. Radiohead's frontman, who turned 48 in October, is long past his days of hiding in tour buses and venting pain and fear into spiral notebooks. Now, he dances onstage and DJ's in clubs.

At the moment, he's sitting in Little Dom's Italian restaurant in the Los Feliz neighborhood of his adopted hometown of Los Angeles, wearing a bleached denim jacket with the collar popped up, a thin white T-shirt and what appear to be leather pants. His long hair is pulled back into a tiny, tight bun; he has a stylish gray beard. Little Dom's is one of his favorite spots – he was here the night before for dinner – but now it's midafternoon, and the restaurant has opened early just for him. He orders an English breakfast tea, and later an espresso. In his hand is an iPhone with a sticker on the back that sums up his response to nearly every conceivable query: "Fuck what you heard."

He just wrapped up a U.S. tour with Radiohead, playing to roughly 90,000 people at Coachella's second weekend. That performance was uneventful – unlike a week earlier, when the sound system went completely dead twice, midshow. Faced with a similar incident at Glastonbury in 1997, Yorke stormed offstage, "ready to kill," at the end of the show. But this time he was able to laugh it off, mostly. "I'd love to tell you a joke, lighten the mood, something like that," he told the crowd. "But this is Radiohead, so fuck it." (Still, he says, "It was literally like one of those recurring nightmares – you're playing your guts out and you realize no one can hear you.")

Yorke has spent a lot of time confronting his old nightmares – and his old self – recently. It's the 20th anniversary of the band's breakthrough album, OK Computer, and he's been poring over his old journals, sketchbooks and demos from the era for inclusion on a deluxe edition of the LP. "It's been really, really, really mental going through it," says Yorke. "Going back into where my head was at – it's really bonkers." The stacks of paper – which include handwritten lyrics on hotel stationery, instructions for the use of an inhaler ("Try very hard not to panic") and drawings of airplanes, helicopters, cars, escalators and other modes of transport – reveal the innermost thoughts of a 27-year-old who was beginning to crack after living on a tour bus for four years in a row. "I was basically catatonic," Yorke says. "The claustrophobia – just having no sense of reality at all."

To most listeners, lyrics about nasty car accidents, airplane crashes, paranoid androids and alien abductions, not to mention a sinister-sounding robot declaring that man was little more than "a pig in a cage on antibiotics," tapped into a general sense of unease about the oncoming 21st century – and the frightening, exponentially accelerating rate of technological innovations, as beepers became cellphones and computers became vessels for news and pornography. "I was getting into the sense of information overload," says Yorke. "Which is ironic, really, since it's so much worse now." The lyrics also drew on Yorke's personal demons – the struggles of being in a rock band that never gave itself a moment of rest, but also deeper insecurities dating back to his childhood.

Released in the spring of 1997 – a time when music was fragmenting into a thicket of subgenres and the relevance of guitar rock seemed to be fading (guitarist Jonny Greenwood recalls thinking that "bands are already old hat") – OK Computer was the last masterpiece of the alt-rock movement, and a reminder that there's still room for rock bands to carry on the late-Beatles mission of using the studio to create grand artistic statements with heretofore unheard sounds. "It was the album where they threw everything out the window," says Yorke's friend Michael Stipe. "They re-imagined and decontextualized what it was to be a band. It was a yearning, emotive, grounded urge to create something real."

"We had a lot of self-confidence and stupidity," says bassist Colin Greenwood. "Stupidity is the wrong word. Lack of experience. When you're 24 or 25, you don't know how wrong this could go because you think you can do anything. And it's fantastic!"

OK Computer transformed Radiohead from a cult British act into the most important rock band on the planet. But in classic Nineties fashion, its success only left Yorke more adrift. "Back then," Yorke recalls, "the person I saw in the mirror kept saying, 'You're shit. Everything you do is shit. Don't do that. It's shit.' " For a minute there, he lost himself.

Jonny still feels sorry for all of those young Alanis Morissette fans. Morissette, who adored Radiohead's second album, 1995's anthemic, guitar-heavy The Bends ("I loved every bass line, every keyboard note, every beautiful note hit by Thom," she says now), had invited Radiohead to open on her Jagged Little Pill tour, where they faced antsy, indifferent kids who wanted them to get off the stage so they could hear "Ironic." "My main memory of that tour," says Jonny, "is playing interminable hand-organ solos to an audience full of quietly despairing teenage girls."

But they used amphitheater stages as an unlikely rehearsal spot for OK Computer, trying out complex unreleased tunes full of despair and longing – "Karma Police," "Let Down," "Paranoid Android" – in broad daylight. "We were well adept at playing to people that didn't give a rat's ass about us," says Yorke. "I used to quite enjoy it. People are sitting down to their chicken dinners. We were trying to get them to choke on the bones."

It was just one more run of shows, four years into a brutal cycle that began in 1992, when the band of high school friends (Yorke, drummer Phil Selway, bassist Colin and guitarists Ed O'Brien and Jonny) from Oxford, England, scored a freak worldwide hit with "Creep," an anthem of self-loathing that threatened to turn them into just another 1990s one-hit wonder – no different than Marcy Playground and Spacehog. And they were all too aware of big British bands, like the Stone Roses, who were never willing to put in the roadwork to break through in the U.S.

So Radiohead crammed into an American Eagle bus (complete with the incongruous airbrushed image on its side of a stallion running on a beach) and hit every corner of America in support of The Bends. In 1995 alone, they played 177 shows, part of a near-suicidal run of touring and recording between 1993 and 1998, with only one month off. For most of the band, those were glorious years. "Some of my greatest memories of the band were on that bus going through America," says O'Brien. "We'd play cards or watch movies. I remember going through the Rocky Mountains and listening to Glen Campbell."

At one point in 1996, the band was killing time in the bus by listening to an audio version of Douglas Adams' classic 1979 sci-fi-comedy novel, A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Midway through the book, a spaceship computer says it's incapable of fending off incoming missiles. "OK, computer," responds galactic president Zaphod Beeblebrox, "I want full manual control now."

Yorke scribbled down the phrase – which marked the point in the narrative when humans saved themselves by reclaiming control from machines – in his bulging notebook of lyrics. Much would be made about the references to the dehumanizing effects of technology sprinkled throughout his new songs, but Yorke insists it was the nonstop travel that was really on his mind: If anything, the dislocation he was feeling from "living in orbit" helped him tap into the smartphone-addled ethos of a future age.

"The paranoia I felt at the time was much more related to how people related to each other," he says. "But I was using the terminology of technology to express it. Everything I was writing was actually a way of trying to reconnect with other human beings when you're always in transit. That's what I had to write about because that's what was going on, which in itself instilled a kind of loneliness and disconnection."

Some of the tech-y lyrics, Yorke concedes, were just signs of his inner nerd emerging. "The whole album is really fucking geeky," he says. "I was kind of a geek when I was a kid, unashamedly so. Then I'm in this rock band famous for drinking tea and never socializing, where the truth is somewhat different." Yorke doesn't elaborate, though he certainly was doing some drinking in those days. But Selway argues that their reputation was well-earned. "The image of Radiohead on the road is a monastery on wheels," he says. "For the most part, it was."

As tours started blurring into one another, Yorke struggled with phobias – he once spoke of picturing Radiohead's tour bus plunging off a cliff. "Our family almost had a terrible (car) accident," he says. "My dad used to talk to me a lot about it. I think he was trying to instill the idea that anything could happen at any moment and you're not in control of it, which led to a slight paranoia, maybe justified." His hatred of cars was tied into his general disdain for a society where, he once said, "people get up too early to leave houses where they don't want to live, to drive to jobs where they don't want to be, in one of the most dangerous forms of transport on Earth. I've never gotten used to that."

Yorke came by his alienation naturally. He was born with his left eye shut, and he endured five surgeries before his sixth birthday to open it up. Doctors botched one of the later ones, forcing him to wear an eye patch for a year and leaving him with a permanent droop. His father's spotty employment as a supplier of chemical-engineering equipment caused the family to move around a lot, and the new kid with an unusual eye was an easy target for bullies. "There's a pervading sense of loneliness I've had since the day I was born," he said in 1995. "Maybe a lot of other people feel the same way, but I'm not about to run up and down the street asking everybody if they're as lonely as I am."

St. Catherine's Court sits on 10 acres of land about 112 miles west of London in the sleepy town of Bath, England. The nine-bedroom Elizabethan manor house was built by a monk in 950 A.D. and expanded over the next thousand years until it was one of the U.K.'s most architecturally stunning private residences. "I still dream about it at night," says a former owner, actress Jane Seymour (a.k.a. Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman), who rented it to bands like the Cure, who recorded their 1996 LP Wild Mood Swings in the enormous ballroom at the center of the house. "It has four-second reverberation," says Seymour. "When John Barry, the composer, was there, he said, 'Don't furnish that room. You have no idea how precious it is as an empty space.' "

It was an appropriately grand location for Radiohead to record OK Computer. The pre-Napster record business was still swimming in money, and the steady sales of The Bends in England, coupled with growing critical buzz in America, persuaded EMI to give Radiohead a big budget. "They were like, 'Do what you want and we'll totally back you,' " says Yorke. "It was exciting."

Radiohead spent a total of six weeks living and working at St. Catherine's Court, where they quickly became acquainted with a key bit of lore about the property: It may be haunted. King Henry VIII's illegitimate daughter Ethelreda Malte supposedly died in one of the bedrooms in 1599, and never left. Jonny wound up sleeping in the nursery, "surrounded by creepy broken dolls and rocking horses," he says. "People were always hearing sounds."

Yorke had it the worst. "Ghosts would talk to me while I was asleep," he says, with a curious hint of amusement. "There was one point where I got up in the morning after a night of hearing voices and decided I had to cut my hair." He attempted to give himself a spontaneous crew cut with "the little scissors on a penknife." It didn't go well. "I cut myself a few times. It got messy. I came downstairs and everyone was like, 'Uh, are you all right?' I was like, 'What's wrong?' Phil very gently took me downstairs and shaved it all off."

But the more lasting supernatural phenomenon was the music the band was making. "It was a time of magic," says O'Brien. "I really believe the stars were in alignment. It all sort of just came into focus." They were drawing inspiration from a disparate list of some of the greatest albums ever made: the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds, Marvin Gaye's What's Going On and especially Miles Davis' Bitches Brew, a tour-bus favorite. "In some ways we were really conceited," says Jonny, "and we would listen to a record like Bitches Brew and be so heavily influenced that we wanted to do it. And it didn't bother us that none of us had or played or even wanted to have any trumpet. And yet we had the kind of arrogance to go, 'Yeah, we can kind of go for that.' "

They were entirely dismissive of the prevailing guitar-rock trend back home – even before Oasis' Gallagher brothers started disparaging the well-educated Radiohead as "students." "To us, Brit pop was just a 1960s revival," says Jonny. "It just leads to pastiche. It's you wishing it was another era. But as soon as you go down that route, you might as well be a Dixieland jazz band, really." Yorke is more direct. "The whole Brit pop thing made me fucking angry," he says. "I hated it. It was backwards-looking, and I didn't want any part of it."

Nigel Godrich, a young engineer who had recorded The Bends, was, for the first time, on board as producer in all but name (he would take that title on every subsequent Radiohead album, as well as with artists from Beck to Paul McCartney), and as the sole engineer. Godrich was at least as fearless and ambitious as the band, and he saw greatness in Radiohead. "They were the band of my dreams," he says. "There were no constraints. This was not Neanderthal rock & roll. It was very high-level thinking, conceptual, moving forwards in terms of sonics, and beautiful songs. It was a perfect thing. Lots of people, lots of ideas, and we all could pull in the same direction."

Radiohead were collectively hostile to Seventies progressive rock ("I didn't even like Pink Floyd," says O'Brien), but that didn't stop them from reinventing prog from scratch on OK Computer, particularly on the six-and-a-half-minute "Paranoid Android" – which Yorke famously described as a cross between "Bohemian Rhapsody" and "Happiness Is a Warm Gun." "The problem with prog stuff," says Jonny, "is it sounds like it really has been thought about. And it's exhausting as a result. All those records were very pastoral, and they're preaching about unicorns and dinosaurs."

On other tracks, Radiohead began to move away from live playing altogether – they based album opener "Airbag" around a distorted loop of Selway's drums. Yorke ended up pushing the boundaries even further on the haunting "Karma Police." One night he and Godrich were having a pint when the singer confessed he didn't like the second half of the song. Without any other members of the band present, they took samples and loops and created a new bed of music with Yorke's vocals on top, climaxing in a swirl of noise that was almost the electronic equivalent of "A Day in the Life."

"It was the first time we did anything like that," says Godrich. "Just us in the studio, and a forerunner of a lot of things to come, good and bad." It was a new way of working that would lead directly to the electronic excursions of Kid A and beyond – as well as to solo albums and intraband conflicts.

On "Fitter Happier," Yorke yielded lead vocals to a Macintosh LC II that read text in a flat, emotionless tone, replete with mispronunciations. He fed a string of advice both practical ("No more microwave dinners and saturated fats") and disturbing ("No killing moths or putting boiling water on the ants") into it and found the result nicely underscored the album's themes.

The LP ends with the mournful "The Tourist," with its repeated line "Hey, man, slow down." "Everything was about speed when I wrote those songs," Yorke says. "I had a sense of looking out a window at things moving so fast I could barely see. One morning in Germany I was feeling particularly paranoid because I hadn't slept well. I walked out to find something to eat, but I couldn't find anything, and this fucking dog was barking at me. I'm staring at this dog, and everyone else is carrying on. That's where 'hey, man, slow down' comes from. It sounds like it's all about technology and stuff, but it's not."

In the end, their record label's investment didn't quite yield the follow-up to The Bends that the corporation expected. "They thought the album was going to be chockablock with radio-tastic singles," said their manager Chris Hufford, who recalled hearing the word "disappointed." "I said, 'Forget the bloody singles, just listen. ... You'll realize what an amazing piece of work it is.' "

Critics and fans did, instantly, and the album went on to go double-platinum in the U.S. Radiohead had reached a level that most bands never approach – but their members weren't sure what to make of the acclaim. "You don't quite believe it," says O'Brien. "But I felt like we'd made a really great record." Adds Selway, "There was an element of sitting there with your fingers in your ears, trying to block some of it out. Maybe we were slightly wary of it after the response that 'Creep' had. It all comes a bit double-edged, really."

As the OK Computer tour began, Radiohead allowed filmmaker Grant Gee to start capturing their world, armed only with a Sony PC-100 handheld camera. In May 1997, he began shooting a film that he would eventually give the ironic title Meeting People Is Easy, as the bandmates gathered at a hotel in Barcelona to subject themselves to promotional interviews for three straight days. "It might not have bothered people with thick skin," says Gee, "but I got the sense they were thin-skinned."

Yorke, especially. "I did have fun sometimes," the singer insists. "But the public side of it, and the way people talked to me, even on the street, I could not fucking handle it. David Bowie was able to use these personas that would fuck with his relationship with the fans. He did it all in a very finessed, elegant way. I did not."

Yorke's exhaustion finally got the best of him in November 1997, as the tour hit an arena in Birmingham, England. "I walked out of soundcheck, disappeared, lost the security and then was trying to get out of the building," says Yorke. After wandering for a while, he ended up on a train filled with Radiohead fans on their way to the show. "There was nowhere to go, so I hid on the train. And that was the nearest I came to trying to escape."

Yorke may have been starting to lose it, but his bandmates kept him from the edge. "Personally speaking," says O'Brien, "and to my own suffering, I spent a lot of time looking out for Thom. It was all about making sure he was able to get through the gig. I had to be there for him like a brother." And other friends forced Yorke to do normal stuff like hitting the pub, even as Stipe eased him into the world of celebrity by tricking him into dinners with the likes of U2.

Somewhere along the line, Yorke developed perspective – the time off that the band finally took between OK Computer and 2000's Kid A didn't hurt. " 'It's OK to be anxious about stuff,' " he says, again addressing younger Thom. " 'If you're choosing to do something as amazing as this, then at some point, right then, mate, you're gonna have to choose to just let things happen. Choose to get time for yourself, walk the fuck away when you can. This internal monologue going on is completely debilitating and completely unhealthy. You're not going crazy. You've just been doing this too long and you need to step away and learn to love why you love it and remember why you did it.' It took me a long time."

A few days before the second weekend of Coachella in April, Radiohead are backstage at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley preparing to go on for one of the last shows of their tour. Yorke is waiting for his teenage kids to arrive, Colin is making arrangements with a road manager to visit an art museum in San Francisco the next morning, and Jonny is sitting alone in his dressing room thumbing through a paperback copy of the 1942 Evelyn Waugh novel Put Out More Flags.

Twenty years after OK Computer, Radiohead are still together, with their original lineup intact. Which doesn't mean there hasn't been serious turmoil. Yorke acknowledges he made it tough for the band when he shifted directions for Kid A. "The others didn't know what to contribute," he says. "When you're working with a synthesizer, it's like there's no connection. You're not in a room with other people. I made everyone's life almost impossible."

But the endless evolution that began with OK Computer has secured Radiohead's cross-generational place as one of the 21st century's most forward-looking bands. Their journey has taken them to the point that Jonny, for one, objects not only to the descriptor "rock" but also the word "band" – and, for that matter, the idea that he's a "guitarist." Jonny sees Radiohead as "just kind of an arrangement to form songs using whatever technology suits the song. And that technology can be a cello or it can be a laptop. It's all sort of machinery when looked at in the right way. That's how I think of it."

Right now, they're on tour in support of their ninth album, 2016's A Moon Shaped Pool, which they surprise-released last May, without any press and with little promotion. "We weren't in a position to really talk about it when it came out," says O'Brien, picking his words carefully. "We didn't want to talk about it being quite hard to make. We were quite fragile, and we needed to find our feet." He pauses. "I don't want to talk about it anymore, if that's all right. I feel like the dust hasn't settled. It was a hard time."

He's delicately referring to the fact that Yorke has been enduring a tragedy that makes everything he went through in the Nineties seem trivial. His ex-wife, Rachel Owen, the mother of his two teenage children, passed away in December after a long battle with cancer. They had separated the prior year, but they'd been together for 23 years. Nobody outside of a tight circle of confidants even knew she was sick, but Yorke's sorrow seeps through nearly every song on A Moon Shaped Pool.

"There was a lot of difficult stuff going on at the time, and it was a tough time for us as people," says Yorke. "It was a miracle that that record got made at all."

Unlike for OK Computer – and most of the rest of the Radiohead catalog – the band came into the sessions with few fresh Yorke demos to flesh out. "There was no rehearsal," says O'Brien. "We just went straight into recording. A lot of the songs had been around a bit. The sound emerged as we recorded."

Somehow, though, the tour behind Radiohead's saddest album became a joyous experience. "I'm really enjoying myself," says Yorke. "It feels really liberating, which I don't often say."

Still, their plans after the tour ends in Tel Aviv in mid-July are up in the air. "I do wish we did more shows," says Colin. "And I wish that we spent more time in a room playing, working on stuff together. But this is how we've worked for a long time."

Colin might be surprised to hear that Yorke says he's willing to consider the idea of recording live as a band – for the first time since 1997. "I've always been extreme about resisting us being a drum-guitar-bass band," says Yorke. "But if that's what people want to try, I'm too old to be standing there with a hammer and saying, 'We must do this, we must do that!' I would like everyone to feel free." He smiles. "But, you know, it's not easy."

  

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obsidianchrysalis
Member since Jan 29th 2003
5940 posts
Thu Jun-01-17 08:58 PM

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9. "Thanks for posting this. "
In response to Reply # 8


  

          

Thom's mental health has always concerned me. Like a lot of brilliant people, he's attuned to aspects of life that most people look past or are unable to articulate their unique takes on the world. But it came at a high cost to him personally and I wish there was a way to extract their great music without making Thom 'catatonic' in the process.

I had no idea about Thom's ex. That must have been heartbreaking to even have to think about work when a source of love for him was slowly being taken from him. But AMSP is their most gorgeous record and it seems like the work was a form of catharsis.

What's good for Thom is alright with me. I tend to get personally connected with the groups I like and Radiohead, aside from being the first Rock group that I loved, seemed like really intelligent, gifted people. I felt I was walking their journey to stardom alongside them.

So it was difficult to hear the rumors of the band nearly splitting after the Kid A days and Thom's descent into depression. It was like hearing of a good friend experience a difficult time in their life. You just life to ease up off of them. Thankfully, it did and Thom and the band has given us a number of other great albums since.


  

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c71
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10. "you're welcome"
In response to Reply # 9


  

          

yes

  

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Nodima
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25. "If you didn't know about Rachel, you should read up on "Daydreaming""
In response to Reply # 9


  

          

specifically, the video.

the most awestruck I've been by a music video in a while.

one of the more surface level details is that he goes through exactly as many doors in that video as there were years in their relationship. another is that almost every character in the video that isn't Thom is a mother or child. The only words he mouths in the video are "beyond me, beyond you" and the reverse vocals at the end that say "half of my life" among other things. He is always walking forwards or upwards.

~~~~~~~~~
"This is the streets, and I am the trap." � Jay Bilas
http://www.popmatters.com/pm/archive/contributor/517
Hip Hop Handbook: http://tinyurl.com/ll4kzz

  

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c71
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11. "19 Things We Learned Hanging Out With Radiohead - RS swipe"
In response to Reply # 0
Thu Jun-08-17 01:25 PM by c71

  

          

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/19-things-we-learned-hanging-out-with-radiohead-w486278


19 Things We Learned Hanging Out With Radiohead
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame thoughts, working with Dr. Dre on 'Kid A' and how James Bond messed with their last LP

Radiohead tell us they briefly considered working with Dr. Dre on 'Kid A' and 18 other things we learned hanging out with the band.

By Andy Greene


Jonny Greenwood is in a tiny backstage room staring at my tiny digital tape recorder like it's about to jump up and bite him. Twenty minutes ago, he was onstage with Radiohead, wrapping up their second consecutive night at the Greek Theater in Berkeley, California with a haunting rendition of "Karma Police."


"Sitting here and talking to you and knowing what I say is going to, you know, it's all a bit…" He pauses, wipes his long black bangs from his eyes and searches for the right word. "It's nauseating," he finally says. "The thought of you having to go through these recordings, listen to them and assemble them into something readable and interesting. It’s that whole sort of 'look at me' side of what we do that feels really stupid."

It feels like a lost scene from Meeting People Is Easy, the 1998 documentary from the Ok Computer era where the group received an endless onslaught of press and adulation until they nearly went insane. But these days, the group gives virtually no interviews and move at a much slower pace. They dropped their 2016 LP A Moon Shaped Pool without doing a single interview and it still topped the charts all over the world, even if Drake and Beyonce kept them stuck at Number Three in America.

But to promote their upcoming 20th anniversary package OK COMPUTER OKNOTOK 1997 2017, they agreed to a rare series of conversations about their 1997 masterpiece for the latest cover story. But we got way more than we needed from our time with the band - even if the process occasionally made them "nauseous." Here are 19 things we learned that didn't make it into the piece.


1. The James Bond movie Spectre screwed with their momentum while making A Moon Shaped Pool.


Producers of the James Bond movie Spectre approached the band to write the theme song, but it was Sam Smith's tune that ultimately wound up in the film. Radiohead released their song for free online, but the timing was not great.

"That fucking James Bond movie threw us a massive curveball," says producer Nigel Godrich. "It was a real waste of energy. We stopped doing what we were doing and had to concentrate on that for awhile since we were told it was something that was going to come to fruition. I haven't seen the movie and I think they ended up with something more suitable for it, but in terms of making A Moon Shaped Pool it caused a stop right when we were in the middle of it."


2. Jonny Greenwood hates guitar solos.


"When we were at school, we hated and distrusted anything that was successful on a large scale," he says. "We just associated it with bands that did guitar solos with big hair. It's already such a preening, self-regarding profession. I've always hated guitar solos. There's nothing worse than hearing someone cautiously going up and down the scales of their guitar. You can hear them thinking about what the next note should be, and then out it comes. It's more interesting to write something that doesn't outstay its welcome."


3. He's also got very mixed feelings about the idea of rock bands in general.


"Even when we were starting out, it felt like everyone's been in a band," Greenwood says. "Bands were already old hat. That felt true then, and more so today. But I tend to change my mind and sometimes I think it's really important and they're doing things worthwhile, but other times I feel just like it's people copying their grandfather's generation. There are grandparents now that were in punk bands and their grandkids are in bands. Maybe that's a great thing. Anything that involves making music, I'm all for. That's the bottom line. But I've also got old-fashioned ideas that there should be some element to it being done without parental approval. That still feels feel important to me.

"I know that sounds really cheesy, but it should unlistenable to the previous generation," he continues. "There should be someone saying, 'That's not music.' It's encouraging many older people feel that way about some rap and extreme electronic stuff. That's good. At the same time, it says nothing about the quality of the music. I change my mind about this all the time."


4. Nigel Godrich can tell the complete story of King of Limbs in a succinct paragraph.


"I had a friend in LA who’s a DJ," he says. "And he’s like, 'You want to DJ?' And so I started DJing and I got Thom into it, just doing parties and stuff. We were like, 'This is such an amazing tool. We can make music with this.' And I was like, 'Okay, let’s do an experiment for two weeks where everyone has a turntable instead of playing the guitar or drums or whatever.' And that two-week experiment ended up being fucking six months. And that’s that record, the whole story of all of it."


5. Thom Yorke's teenage children are huge Radiohead fans.


"That makes me feel proud," says Yorke. "They travel with us quite a bit. It makes me think, 'Cool, this is good. When they tell me we suck, I'll stop.'"


6. He's psyched to be creating the score for the upcoming horror remake Suspiria by Italian director Luca Guadagnino.


"The original soundtrack was by (1970s progressive rock band) Goblin and it's completely bonkers," he says. "It's been fucking hard work."



7. He's much more vague when it comes to his other future plans.


"There's also a bunch of things I'm doing on my own that I have to finish," is all Yorke will say on the matter. "They've been on hold for ages. Whether they will translate into anything, I'm not quite sure. It's kind of weird. I don't have a plan for the second part of the year at the moment. I mean, I wasn't able to plan things for a long time now and now I can. I'm trying to get my head around that."


8. There are no dates on the books after the tour wraps in Tel Aviv on July 19th, and the group has different opinions about adding on more legs.


Phil Selway: "It's a blank calendar at the moment (after this leg ends), but we all have other stuff that's been on hold for a little while. I feel that come July we will have done as much as we can with what we’ve got at the moment. I’d love the idea that we’d be back out again touring at some point, but I think this feels about right for this record."

Yorke: "I would imagine we’ll keep going. I mean, I don’t know how, or when, but no, we’re not gonna stop. I fucking hope not."

Colin Greenwood: "I don't know what’s going to happen after July, so I can't say anything beyond that. But I love the people that I work with, and I love what everyone does. So we’ll see. But I'm happy to go play anywhere else."

Ed O'Brien: "I think the tour will be done after these shows."


9. Nigel Godrich's father died near the end of the A Moon Shaped Pool sessions.


"The day he died was the day that we had the string session for 'Burn the Witch,'" he says. "We had two days to do it, so I literally left him on a fucking table in my house and went and recorded. And it was a very, very emotional day for me. He was a string player as well so it was one of those things where it felt like he would want me to go and just do this."



10. The sessions for the album went through other difficult times.


"It felt hard to make progress," says Jonny Greenwood, "and then suddenly we had two golden weeks in the studio – kind of isolated – and it felt like we broke the back of lots of difficult things and came away with half a record suddenly. We just needed some isolation ... And I think we just operate on a steady diet of anxiety and uncertainty and utter conviction in the songs."


11. Nigel Godrich basically finished the album on his own.


"With Radiohead, people always say, 'Oh, it's much better live,'" says Godrich. "But this record didn't exist before it was created in the studio. Thom just doesn't work like he used to. He will write a song, or a piece of the song, and the idea is the last part of it is developed with everyone's input. If the focus isn’t there, then it has to be my job to make it happen. I just have to do whatever it takes, which makes me unpopular because I’m like, 'Okay, this is how we’re going to do it. This is where this happens. You’re going to change to that bit there.'

"At first, there was nothing happening, and I had to find a way of making that record," he continues. "One of them is just that it's all recorded on 8-track tape, except for three songs that were recorded using 24-track tape loops. I did that to bring everything together and keep them focused. Because otherwise it wouldn’t have happened ... In the end, we went to a residential studio in the south of France for three weeks and then I went off and I just put it all together myself."


12. Ed O'Brien briefly thought about bringing in Dr. Dre to work on Kid A.


"It was sort of like a dream," he says. "I kept on saying, 'Oh I’d love to work with Dr. Dre.' I knew it would likely be shouted down or laughed at. Also, it might have been be a little bit forced. But at the time, in my head, it made perfect sense. The problem would have been finding modus operandi because Dre obviously works in a certain way. Could he have handled a rock band? Who knows? But it came from being a fan of N.W.A and his productions around that time."


13. Ed would like to see the band still tour in their 70s.


"You see that joy Leonard Cohen got," he says. "You see it with the Dead or Neil Young when he goes off with Crazy Horse. Everybody would like to see Pink Floyd do it. If we were to do it, it would have to be authentic. It might be like the Rolling Stones. It might be like Leonard Cohen or the Grateful Dead."


14. They're mostly enjoying playing the occasional "Creep" on this tour.


"It's a good song," says O'Brien. "It's nice to play for the right reasons. People like it and want to hear it. We do err towards not playing it because you don't want it feel like show business. But we started throwing it in last year."

Yorke is a little less sure about the whole thing. "We only did it once or twice this year," he says. "The first time I'm feeling the fakes we'll stop. It can be cool sometimes, but other times I want to stop halfway through and be like, 'Nah, this isn't happening.'"


15. They've never felt cool.


"We went to some awards show years ago, I can't remember which one," says Jonny. "U2 got something and then Ed and Phil came on afterward to get an award for packaging or something. The difference was comical. U2 walk on with such charisma and just swagger on. Then us idiots shuffle on. We'd feel awkward and would make everyone in the audience feel awkward."


16. They are drawing from a much larger repertoire of songs on this tour than in 2012.


"King of Limbs had this rhythm thing and we wanted to create this kind of rave with the tour," says O'Brien. "This one feels looser. It feels like we’ve got more songs to play around with. We’ve got 60-odd songs we’ve rehearsed. We’ve got that ability to go out and play a few songs we don’t normally play."

Selway says that most anything is on the table. "Nothing much ever really creeps in from Pablo Honey besides the obvious one," he says. "From The Bends onwards we can revisit any material that feels relevant. Take ‘Fake Plastic Trees.’ We haven’t been near that song for years. But you come back to it. You’re just like, 'Ah, okay. This works. This is good.' There has been a request for 'Lurgee.' We've not worked it out, but off Pablo Honey that's probably the one that would work best in the context of what we're doing now. It's a good song."


17. Don't expect to see them play Ok Computer in its entirety.


They may have a new 20th anniversary box set and they may even be playing a gig in Monza, Italy on the exact day it came out, but that doesn't mean they're going to play it straight through at any point. "'Fitter Happier' might have a few issues," says drummer Phil Selway. "We'd also have to play 'Electioneering' then, wouldn't we? (They haven't played the song since 1998.) So no, I don't think we'll do that. There's no plans, although I am going to see John Cale do the Velvet Underground and Nico. My eldest son turns 18 around the time of the Liverpool show and really wants to go. I said, 'Okay, we'll do that.'"


18. The sound meltdown at Coachella was very confusing.


"I think we were at the third song, which was 'Ful Stop,' and suddenly I heard a crash in my ears," says Colin Greenwood. "Then our stage manager walked out in front of Thom and everyone and was like, 'Gentlemen, can you please leave the stage?' I thought there'd been an actual crash. I'm right in the back between two drum kits, so I can't really hear the P.A. I thought there had been a plane crash or something since I heard this explosion. I found out it was a technical problem, but we played the whole set and I'm happy with that."

They don't blame Coachella for the fiasco, though. "It was the software or hardware from our mixing desk," says Yorke. "(At the second Coachella), they double-bagged it with two desks and an engineer. They massively over-compensated. In all the times we've played I've only ever had the tap on the shoulder during thunderstorms, so it was quite weird to have two taps on the shoulder. It was like one of those recurring nightmares where you're playing your guts out and you realize no one can hear you."


19. They are eligible to enter the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame next year, but that doesn't mean they're going to show up.


Phil Selway: "It's a bit like having the free bus pass in the UK when you reach a certain again. Blimey. Have we got to that point? God knows (if we'll go). We'd have to sit down and talk about it, but it's probably not at the top of my list of things to do. But who knows? I don't know."

Jonny Greenwood: "I don't care. Maybe it's a cultural thing that I really don't understand. I mean, from the outside it looks like ... it's quite a self-regarding profession anyway. And anything that heightens that just makes me feel even more uncomfortable."

Ed O'Brien: "I don't want to be rude about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame because for a lot of people it means something, but culturally I don't understand it. I think it might be a quintessential American thing. Brits are not very good at slapping ourselves on the back. It seems very show-biz and I'm not very show-biz. We haven't even been asked. I don't want to be rude. But if you ask me what I'd rather be doing that night, I'd rather be sitting at home in front of the fire or going to a gig. I realized years ago that I didn't like award ceremonies. You walk in there and you feel self-conscious. It's just really uncomfortable. Wherever there is media there seem to be a real level of bullshit. It just feels non-authentic to us."

Thom Yorke: "It wouldn't be the first place ... don't ask me things like that. I always put my foot in my mouth."

Colin Greenwood: "I'd be grateful if we got in. Look at the other people that have been inducted. I don't know if everyone else will go though. It might be me just doing bass versions of everything like, 'Come on, you know this one!' I'd have to play the bass part to 'Creep' five times."

  

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BigReg
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12. "I agree with this Jonny quote 100%"
In response to Reply # 11


  

          

"I know that sounds really cheesy, but it should unlistenable to the previous generation," he continues. "There should be someone saying, 'That's not music.' It's encouraging many older people feel that way about some rap and extreme electronic stuff. That's good. At the same time, it says nothing about the quality of the music. I change my mind about this all the time."

While i get his quality control part, I remember when you had the rise of all those pop punk bands in the early aughts how disturbed I was at how saccarine and Starbucks ready they are.

Its why I don't mind the current trap dudes even when I think they objectively suck; there's a long tradition of bucking tradition as music becomes generational and it only moves a genre forward (even if all the subsequent practitioners in said genre just learn what NOT to do)

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
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13. "I think there is a "phase" aspect to that dynamic"
In response to Reply # 12


  

          

I'm sure Frank Sinatra would have called what the Beatles were doing in Germany in their pre-fame era as noise


but...


when the Beatles were making a song like "something," Frank Sinatra was saying how good that song was. And obviously Paul McCartney continued to "refine" his musical sense way past what the Beatles were doing in Germany.


So...


yeah, there has to be a "phase" where stuff is "unlistenable" but there has to be a "refining" point at some point.

Obviously later generations acts like Black Flag would have preferred what Paul and the Beatles were doing in Germany to what Paul eventually "refined" himself into by the early 80's when Black Flag was doing their thing.


phases have to go on.

  

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SoWhat
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Thu Jun-08-17 03:15 PM

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14. "naw."
In response to Reply # 13


  

          

by the time the new jacks are making sounds even the old folks dig there are newer jacks making music that even the new jacks can't get with.

this tale is as old as time.

you may be just getting into it.

nothing you're experiencing is new. nothing you're feeling means the kids aren't alright. it just means you're old. welcome to the dawn.

______________________
"It's absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious." Oscar Wilde

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
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Thu Jun-08-17 03:17 PM

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15. "you're saying what I'm saying"
In response to Reply # 14


  

          

the "new jacks" go through an "unlistenable" phase and the "new jacks" after them go through a "phase"

that's what I said.

  

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SoWhat
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16. "right on."
In response to Reply # 15


  

          

______________________
"It's absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious." Oscar Wilde

  

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shockzilla
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20. "lol"
In response to Reply # 14


          

>welcome to the dawn.

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
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17. "there is also the issue of the different pathways of"
In response to Reply # 12


  

          

first going the path of "following a formula" and eventually having your musical "senses" take over and creating "worthwhile" music

or...

the pathway of "doing lot's of thing 'wrong'" and eventually having your musical senses take over to start "correcting" wrong "tendencies" with musically "pleasing" tendencies so the music become "worthwhile" that way.


Bands who do pop-punk, or hard-rock, or country, or "mainstream jazz" are known to be big on following formulas and that is why there seems to be a lack of "vitality" in those styles (even though some should say the musicians in those styles should have "something musical" in them that makes the music "worthwhile" even though they are mainly following formulas).

With indie-rock and some forms of "edgy-er" jazz, many of the musicians in those styles value "doing things wrong" sometimes and that seems to be why those styles seem to develop and listeners perceive those styles have "vitality."

The composer Chopin once wrote that the only correct way to making simple music is to first go through the phase of being able to make complex music. It seems that Chopin felt that once a musician was "able" to "work with" complexity THEN that musician could start to do "simple" things that were really worthwhile.

So...

I guess many think "beginning" musicians have to start on a level of "following formulas" and doing simple things before they get into doing complex things (but most listeners know many musicians like to stay on the level of doing simple/formula things)

but...

there are musicians who start off doing "wrong" things first and then develop a way that has validity.

I'm sure there are some teaching methods where learning basics and learning to go off-track from the basics are taught at the same time.

The keyboardist Keith Jarrett was taught with a certain extensive musical foundation but by the time Keith went to the Berkeley school of music, Keith kept clashing with teachers because Keith didn't want to always follow musical rules in his assignments. So there was a "mixture" there.

  

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dagu
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18. "Thought this part was hilarious."
In response to Reply # 11


  

          

>19. They are eligible to enter the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
>next year, but that doesn't mean they're going to show up.
>
>Colin Greenwood: "I'd be grateful if we got in. Look at the
>other people that have been inducted. I don't know if everyone
>else will go though. It might be me just doing bass versions
>of everything like, 'Come on, you know this one!' I'd have to
>play the bass part to 'Creep' five times."

---------------------

http://www.last.fm/user/dagu85

  

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normal35762
Member since Oct 20th 2004
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Thu Jun-15-17 04:39 PM

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19. "bookmark"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
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21. "Oral history of OK Computer - RS swipe"
In response to Reply # 0
Fri Jun-16-17 02:16 PM by c71

  

          

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/features/radioheads-ok-computer-an-oral-history-w485753


Radiohead's 'OK Computer': An Oral History

Thom Yorke and the band look back at their 1997 masterpiece in honor of its 20th anniversary

Hear the story of how Thom Yorke and his Radiohead bandmates came to create their 1997 classic 'OK Computer.'

By Andy Greene


The June 15th Rolling Stone cover story took an in-depth look at Radiohead's OK Computer in honor of the album's 20th anniversary. The band let us hang backstage over the course of two days at the Berkeley Greek Theater as they shared memories from that tumultuous and wildly innovative time in their lives, and a week later Thom Yorke sat down with RS at an Italian restaurant in Los Angeles to chat some more. All in all, the members of Radiohead spoke on the record for more than seven hours in anticipation of the upcoming OKNOTOK reissue, which contains a remastered version of the LP along with a bonus disc of B sides and outtakes.


We couldn't begin to fit everything they told us into the main story, so here's an expansive oral history of OK Computer put together from the many, many outtakes. It features all five members of the group along with their producer Nigel Godrich, tourmates Michael Stipe and Alanis Morissette, art director Stanley Donwood, filmmaker Grant Gee, and actress Jane Seymour, who owned the house where they recorded the album.


I. The Beginning


In 1986, high school friends Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, Colin Greenwood, Ed O'Brien and Phil Selway began playing around their hometown of Oxford, England, as On a Friday.

Ed O'Brien (guitar): From the very first band practice in high school I felt, "Oh, I found it. I found my purpose in life." It's very lucky to feel that at 16. Life is quite chaotic as a teenager. We went to private school, so there was all this stuff like, "What are you going to do? You're going to do this, that?" And none of it resonated. And suddenly when the band came along it was like, "Voom. This is it." If you have that, then the rest is just detail. But that thing, that pull, was complete and utter "I have to do this." There was no other question.

Colin Greenwood (bass): We loved the music that we were making together, and the songs Thom was writing. And I think it was a way for us to be creative together in a world, at the time, that wasn't perhaps so creative in terms of school. Me and Jonny's mum used to say, "Well as long as it keeps you off the street." Like we'd somehow be, like, shooting up or selling ourselves for crystal meth or something. On her 70th birthday, we took her to Paris to see us play at the Zenith. She was very worried if anyone was going to turn up, and she was also worried about why there weren't any tables or chairs for people to sit down and listen to the music. It was very sweet.

Phil Selway (drums): We realized there was something that had a lot of potential. Musically it was kind of exciting, but we hardly did any gigs for that first five years. It was just us getting together in practice halls wherever we could find to rehearse. And I think you can actually acquire some fairly grandiose ideas about how good you are.


Jonny Greenwood (guitar): We just got loads of pleasure from rehearsing and writing music and recording. I can remember one winter they came back from college and we just rehearsed every day of the week up until Christmas Day. And then after Christmas everyone went back to college. And there'd been no sort of goal. There'd been no function. We didn't play in concerts. It's weird looking back. I guess we were just very into kind of hearing ourselves and hearing each other. Looking back now at those early songs, I realize how surprisingly well-written they were, and how good Thom was already when he was 16.

Ed O'Brien: They never felt like lean years. It was exploring. And musically we were exploring. We started off at the time of the Smiths' The Queen is Dead, that era. By the end of that period, or the middle of that period, there was the Pixies, Happy Mondays and Stone Roses and all these things. We dipped our toe, not very effectively, in each. But in doing so we came out with a sound. We came up with our thing. And that's how we got signed.



II. Early Success


In 1992, the band signed a deal in with EMI, who urged them to change their name. They went with Radiohead after the obscure 1986 Talking Heads song "Radio Head."


Thom Yorke: We got destroyed for signing to a major label. Everyone was like, "Why did you sign with EMI?" And we were like, "Well, because they had the Beatles, Queen and Pink Floyd. And they were the ones that believed in us."

Colin Greenwood: A lot of those indie labels were labels that were owned by major labels. It was a weird bunch of coincidences more than anything. It was (that) our managers knew people at the record company. I happened to be selling records with a guy who got a job as an A&R rep, so it was a weird bunch of coincidences.

Their debut EP Drill hit in May of 1992 and barely made a dent on the U.K. charts, but later that year they began work on Pablo Honey (named after a Jerky Boys routine) and a new song called "Creep" that became their first single. It took off first in Tel Aviv and slowly broke all over the world over the course of a year. They supported it with a tour that took them to America for the first time.

Ed O'Brien: Having a big hit like that wasn't in the game plan. We were giddy. People were saying, "You know, this isn't normal." And the first tour we sold out, and our American tour manager was going, "You know, I've toured with bands who have been doing this for seven, eight years, and this isn't usual." So it was really great on the one hand. But on the other hand we couldn't follow it up. The album had a couple of other songs that were OK, but we didn't have a body of work. We didn't know what we were doing.

Thom Yorke: Having a big hit was a bit of a mind-fuck on one level, but it was extremely useful on another level. It was like a pass that allowed us to do whatever the fuck we wanted for a few years.

Phil Selway: At this point now, we can look back and realize what a wonderful thing "Creep" did for us. It was kind of a snakes-and-ladders game and we're suddenly quite a few rows ahead of where we should have been.


Thom Yorke: I remember we arrived in America the first time. "Creep" was all over KROQ and that sort of shit. It made sense to keep coming here 'cause back in Britain we were a band driving around in a van. And then suddenly, here, we had a tour bus and we were being woken up early in the morning to go and play on radio stations. We were told we had to meet a lot of people and talk to a lot of people, so we met a lot of people, we talked to a lot of people, we played endlessly.

Jonny Greenwood: We were always disgusted by the British attitude toward America, which was always quite condescending. It was always like, "We're going to go America and show them how to do it." It would be from such a position of superiority. But we were just excited to go see San Francisco. See Portland. Explore. What could be more exciting than that? See the country. It was kind of more tourism than ambition, really. It was waking up early and being in a new city and having a whole day there before the concert. Just amazing. And suddenly there's Chicago. Then you do a concert, get on a bus and you fall asleep and you wake up somewhere else.


III: The Bends


Ed O'Brien: If you're at a big company like EMI, it's very easy to get sort of forgotten about. And the good thing about "Creep" was, just on a purely business side, it meant that we weren't in debt to the company. We broke even on that first record. So it meant, artistically, that when we made The Bends, we didn't have the record company breathing down our neck. They basically let us get on with it.

Phil Selway: The initial sessions for The Bends were quite stilted. Some good stuff came out of it. Like "Just," "Fake Plastic Trees" and "Planet Telex." So it wasn't all bad, but there wasn't an ease to it.

Ed O'Brien: We were very insecure. Studios aren't great places necessarily for making you secure. And I think we hadn't really found our modus operandi. The great thing about (Bends producer) John Leckie was nothing seemed to phase him. We were sort of rabbit-in-the-headlights some of the time.

Colin Greenwood: Bless John Leckie. He was very patient with us. We were aware that what we were going to release would have scrutiny after the first record.

A young engineer named Nigel Godrich worked on the album and produced "Black Star" when Leckie was away at a wedding.

Colin Greenwood: "Black Star" is a beautiful song and that went really well. We used to hang out with Nigel and he was amazing. We love him so much.


Nigel Godrich: They were under intense pressure. That they had a lot of material, a lot of good songs, and they were being pushed in a certain direction. I think that maybe they didn't want to become this sort of pop band that the label would have them be. People from the label would visit and it got very uncomfortable. Thom called me a few months after I thought the album was done and asked if I could record them in their rehearsal space. We did three or four songs, including "Black Star." It felt like the adults were away and we could work without any restrictions. It also became very, very clear that Thom is a very, very gifted writer. I remember he'd just written "Subterranean Homesick Alien" while we were doing The Bends. He'd sit there with his little book on his knees turning the pages. This wasn't "Anyone Can Play Guitar." It was much more on point.


IV: The Endless Bends Tour


To support the Bends, Radiohead went on a grueling tour between early 1995 and late 1996 that would take them all over the planet many times over.


Jonny Greenwood: We never got into that fog of not knowing exactly where we were. It was always quite ... what's the word? It was fun. It was good. Always a blast. We played a lot of cards. It's a repetition of waking up on the bus, and it's still moving, and it's seven in the morning, and you've got another four hours before you get to Athens, Georgia, or whatever. And it's just kind of getting up and sitting up front and watching America roll past. Feeling like, "I wonder what Athens is like? I know it just from all the R.E.M. videos." So you've got so many popular culture references tied to American cities. And you want to feel the real thing.

Ed O'Brien: There were 12 of us on a bus. And personally speaking, I loved it. Everybody had a sense of purpose. We just had this thing about wanting to get better. And our sound manager, who's still doing our sound now, would come back and we'd say, "How can we get better? What can we do?" And so it was all about getting better.

Colin Greenwood: We played places that most English bands wouldn't end up playing, like El Paso, Texas. I loved and adored practically every second of it. We were opening for some bands, and people would come and listen to us, and then they'd leave. And the headliner would come on. My memory of that time was that everything was very sweaty.

Phil Selway: You get into the whole rhythm of life on a tour bus and you value any private space that you can find. You'll have your bunk, and then once you pull over the curtain, that's your space. You become very tight (as a band) in a lot of ways. It gives that cohesion to what you're doing musically.


In September of 1995, they opened for R.E.M on the Monster tour in America.


Phil Selway: I think it would have been very presumptuous of us to think, "OK, that's where we're going to be, so let's watch and learn from them." But they set a very good example. They were very generous with us. They were very gracious about how they conducted themselves. There wasn't anybody bigger at the time, really. They just handled it with such dignity and intelligence.

Michael Stipe: We managed to climb to great heights of success and popularity without becoming complete cheeseballs and without selling totally ... I hate the term "sellout," but without compromising our vision of what we could or should be. That provides for someone like Radiohead, a bit of a roadmap. A part of that is really listening to yourself and trusting your intuition, trusting your gut, and they're really good at that.


They began plotting out their third album by the the summer of 1996, but then they got an offer to open up for Alanis Morissette on her Jagged Little Pill tour they just couldn't turn down.


Alanis Morissette: I was on tour in Europe and my bandmates and I were traveling overnight at three in the morning after a show to Italy, and we all decided to just sit and listen to The Bends from beginning to end and my mind was blown. Before that I just knew "Creep" and "Fake Plastic Trees," which I'd covered on tour. It's just such a flawless piece of music in my mind. I don't entirely know how the tour logistically came together, but it was such a lovely pairing in my mind. It was really grounding for me to be with such bona-fide-to-the-bone artists. It felt really validating because the industry was very wild and patriarchal, so to be on the road with such true savants was a gift for me.

Ed O'Brien: That tour was a really important thing. Her album was real pop. We played stuff off The Bends and "Creep." No one knew anything off The Bends. They knew "Creep" because it was a Top 40 hit. And we were like, "Oh. ..." So we ended up just playing "Creep," and all the rest were new songs. So we played "Let Down," "Climbing Up the Walls," "Paranoid Android," "No Surprises." They were all new songs. We had a song called "Lift" that didn't make it. They responded really well to that one night. It had a really killer groove. It kind of got them rocking in the aisles. But then they'd be like, "Oh, there's 'Creep.' Whoa! We know that one."


Colin Greenwood: I remember we played Jones Beach (in Long Island). We all wore black and sort of scowled onto the stage, and played our heavy tunes. And, like, mums were there. Preteen girls starting to cry.

Alanis Morissette: It was always a misassumption that my audience was always filled with 12-year-old girls because the truth is it was a whole range. The people who came to my shows were very open-hearted and very open to musicality and musicianship. It was lovely to know that the people in the audience would behold them with great openness. My audience is so musical and tender and fierce that it's such a great group of people to play new songs to because their attention was rapt.

Thom Yorke: It was actually a really nice experience. And we by that point were well adept at playing to people who didn't give a rat's ass about us.

Thom Yorke: By the time we got to the end of The Bends tour we felt like, "OK, we've done that now." Then the record company kind of shut up and went, "Alright it's fair enough, do what you want and whatever you do next we'll totally back you." If you think about it, if you're a movie director in the studio, like J.J. Abrams, Paramount comes around and says, "Whatever you want, mate, you got it." We were like, "OK, we want all our own gear. We want our own studio and we wanna work with Nigel." And they went, "OK!"


V: Recording OK Computer


Shortly before the Alanis tour began, they began cutting songs for their third album at Canned Applause, their rehearsal space near Didcot, Oxfordshire.


Nigel Godrich: We were recording in, essentially, a cork box without a toilet. It was out in the countryside next to a field with some cows in it, and a power station in the distance.

Jonny Greenwood: The isolation appealed to us. A little bit of English Gothic, a little bit of Evelyn Waugh.

Ed O'Brien: In May and June (of 1996) we did the initial recordings there. I think we're in there for about two months. It's an apple-storage shed on a farm. And there's nothing around. The big thing is we didn't want to go into conventional recording studios. We felt that there was this whole move to make the space our own. We felt like we'd used as much as we could of Canned Applause.

Nigel Goodrich: And after a while we thought, "OK we've done really well, but we need a change of scene. I think we deserve something a little bit more luxurious."


Days after the Alanis tour wrapped, the sessions moved to St. Catherine's Court, an enormous Elizabethan manor house in Bath, England – just a few turrets short of an actual castle – owned by the actress Jane Seymour.


Jane Seymour: Being an American and not being a resident in England, I could never spend more than 90 days in England in any given year. So the house had to be rented out when I wasn't there, it just didn't make any sense otherwise and it's a house that needs to be lived in.

Nigel Godrich: The people who had sold us gear had set up the Cure to make (Wild Mood Swings) there. It had been proofed as a space. And we just went down there and it was really very nice. I mean, why would you go into a space where people had done the same thing a thousand times? It's like using a public toilet. Why wouldn't you just go and find your own? Throughout my career one of the things I've loved doing the most is just setting up in weird spaces.

Colin Greenwood: It was incredible house and we all lived there. In the morning I'd go down into the basement-kitchen for cereal and then wander up into the library, which is where the control room was. And there were lots of snaking cables down the beautiful, old, dark wooden corridors, 'round to the old ballroom where the live room was. It was this incredibly beautiful, peaceful place before we ruined the silence with the music. We went there twice. We went there for three weeks and then another three weeks.

Jonny Greenwood: We were very privileged. We didn't have to think about anything but eating and making music.

Nigel Godrich: It was the band and me and Peter "Plank" (Clements) who was their roadie. Literally, it was just me working on the album. I didn't have an assistant; I didn't have any help. Plank had never been in the studio before, but he'd help me lugging the stuff around. It was the seven of us plus the cook and Mango, Jane's cat. The gatekeeper looked over the cat. He'd say, "Don't let the cat in the TV room since it pisses on the carpet."

We recorded in the ballroom, which had a beautiful wooden floor and a wooden panels with a big Medieval tapestry on the wall, which is perfect. It sounded beautiful. There was sort of a corridor in between, and the other side was this amazing library space, which is a lovely dead space to set a control room. At the top there was a nursery, which was full of soft toys, which it sounds really good. And then stone rooms and stuff like that. Outside, there was an orangery attached to the building where we ended up recording a lot of vocals in.

Thom Yorke: I don't remember sleeping a lot. I remember it was very haunted.

Jane Seymour: People had claimed they had seen what they thought was my (dead) mother in a big blue dress walking through walls to go into the bathroom. Clearly, that was obviously odd. We had séances. We got people who specialize in that kind of thing to wander around the house. Everyone who ever wanted to find a ghost had been at that house and nobody found anything.

Nigel Godrich: It was very Scooby-Doo.

Stanley Donwood: All the old houses in England are haunted. I think it's the law.

Thom Yorke: The ghosts would talk to me while I was asleep. You couldn't discern the conversations because there was more than one at the same time. I got really spooked while recording the vocals for "Exit Music." It felt like someone was standing next to me.

Colin Greenwood: We never left the house. And the one time we left the house we went to Bath for the day, and it was a bit like an episode of Homeland where you've been kidnapped and the negotiations have succeeded and the kidnappee has been freed out of a van in the middle of a really busy town or city. We were just wandering around, like, the middle of the shopping center in Bath with obviously hundreds of people looking around just thinking, "This is really weird."

Ed O'Brien: I remember some amazing walks at night. We'd walk out one night, heavy frost and a full moon. Everything was so bright. It was a time of magic. I really believe the stars were in alignment for us.


Stanley Donwood, who happened to live nearby in Bath, would often ride his bicycle over to work on the artwork.


Stanley Donwood: I wanted to just create a kind of fog world. There were lots of fragments of images and found stuff, things I just found on the street that I scanned into a computer along with bits of text. One was an airplane-safety guide Thom stole from a commercial flight. (The main image on the cover) is a road taken from a skyscraper or airplane or something. I don't remember. (The image appears to have recently been pinpointed to a highway junction in Hartford, Connecticut. The group played there with Alanis Morissette on August 20th, 1996.)

We layered it all together and then tried to obliterate it, almost like a terrible criminal trying to conceal the evidence of what he did. I got the completely mistaken idea that white was somehow the color of death, so I wanted it white. I know it's usually black, but I was thinking it was some other culture where white is the color of death. I was quite a morbid character.

Nigel Goodrich: Visitors would come and go on weekend. (Thom's girlfriend) Rachel (Owen) came. At the end of the second three-week session we felt like we used it up. We were like, "We shouldn't have come back. We should have gone somewhere else." But it was fine. When it was done we went to studio for a few odds and sods and then we started mixing.


VI: The Songs


1. "Airbag"


Thom Yorke: I was really frightened of cars back then, but "Airbag" was almost the opposite of that. If you get into a crash or a potentially disastrous situation and walk away, you feel a thousand times more alive regardless of what that is. It's more about that. I was also sort of experimenting with the way that Michael (Stipe) wrote lyrics where you've got this thing of semi-nonsense, but when you add them together, it has a cumulative expression of something.

Nigel Godrich: The drum loop on that song was inspired by DJ Shadow. It's a departure from a rock band. What happened was I told Thom and Phil to sit there for a couple of hours and create a drum loop. And a day and a half later, they were like, "OK, we've got it." But it wasn't very exciting sounding, so I ran it through Jonny's pedal board. And we just did three takes of him just like doing all sorts of shit to it and we put it all in.


2. "Paranoid Android"


Thom Yorke: It was 50 percent "Bohemian Rhapsody," if I could ever get that many vocals together, and 50 percent "Happiness Is a Warm Gun." Have you heard the original ending?

Jonny Greenwood: It originally had a Hammond organ solo that goes on forever. It's hard to listen to without clutching the sofa for support.

Ed O'Brien: To me, the song sounded like Queen meets the Pixies.

Nigel Godrich: When we started at Canned Applause they would play the song linearly. Nothing really happened with the outro. It just spun and spun and it got very Deep Purple and went off. Then it was like, "We're going to change sonically what happens in the middle, so it's a jump." At the end, Thom came up with the whole thing about the delaying the band coming in. So the moment we think it should go up, he just goes around on the acoustic. I thought that was very clever.

We had to put different sections of the song together from completely different parts. We had to fake and tape-edit to make the different sections of it go into each other. It's a very hard thing to explain, but it's all on 24-track and it runs through. But I had to do a sort of pretty snazzy ... I was very pleased with myself. I sort of stood there and said, "You guys have no idea what I've just done." It was pretty clever.

Stanley Donwood: I remember watching them run a microphone with a long wire out into some little ornamental building, a shed, in the garden. They were cutting vocals for "Paranoid Android," and Thom was just letting go and screaming his head off. It was a very strange evening.

Nigel Goodrich: He did that in the orange room. I think he just needed to go out and scream. It's in a room made of glass out in the garden.

Ed O'Brien: People thought it was prog, but prog always took itself so seriously. And "Paranoid Android," there's a kind of serious message in there, but it's kind of cartoon-like.

Jonny Greenwood: There's a Mellotron on it. I remember hearing a Genesis record and thinking the Mellotron sounded amazing, so I stole it. It was either Nursery Cryme or Selling England by the Pound. It didn't sound like any other keyboard. Instead there was a choir, and a weird, fucked-up sort of choir. I love the fact that the notes run out after a few seconds. Some relative of the inventor was trying to remake them and had a few. They came with the tapes in and it turned out they all belonged to Tangerine Dream, which is getting into prog territory.


3. "Subterranean Homesick Alien"


Thom Yorke: That was like Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

Jonny Greenwood: I remember Thom playing a really fantastic few seconds of "Subterranean Homesick Alien," just a few bars. And either through a mistake or something, those two seconds were wiped. And a part of me will always regret that I can't hear that again, because the way the reverb played, it sounded great. We got something nearly as good. But I find it really interesting that it can't be rescued from a hard drive. You know, control-Z, return to life.


4. "Exit Music (for a Film)


Thom Yorke: (Romeo + Juliet director) Baz Luhrmann sent me two random scenes from the movie. One is where they first meet around a little fish tank. And then they sent me one other which I can't remember. And I had a half-formed song going one way, but then I got totally obsessed with the prison tapes by Johnny Cash.

Nigel Godrich: We listened to Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison a lot. At the beginning of "Exit Music" the voice comes in very loud, and that was something that struck from from Johnny Cash. We also listened to Remy Zero a lot. Colin was really into that. Pet Sounds too.

Thom Yorke: As far as I'm concerned, Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy. It's about two people who can't be together and are naïve and young enough to believe that they'll go see each other in the next life so they choose to go there.

Jonny Greenwood: I remember working at the chords with Thom for the choir part. It was really painstaking. We had to relearn how to really concentrate and focus on something small and work at it, properly. And not just go, "Yeah. That will do." Looking at how the chords run into each other and not be too long and boring. I can remember it making me really tired having to concentrate on that stuff.


5. "Let Down"


Thom Yorke: That came from being in the bubble and looking at things as they passed by me. If you spend all your time time traveling on airplanes or on buses or whatever, you're bound to get this sense like in "Let Down." It's like hanging onto something and having the floors collapse underneath you.

Ed O'Brien: Thom used to demo a lot of stuff on tour, and we recorded at soundcheck, too. With "Let Down," I remember us playing on Easter Monday on the Bends tour. Thom had done a demo of the song and we were in this place with lots of reverb. And it was like, "Oh, this makes sense." It was recorded live without people recording overdubs. A lot of that record was recorded live.

Nigel Godrich: We recorded that in the orangery. If you go to a recording studio, the best thing you're going to get is the kind of clichéd video of people in the studio, you know? But if I set you up in that corner here, you'll always remember this room and you'll be inspired by that plant or whatever. It brings a different sort of thing to it.


6. "Karma Police"


Jonny Greenwood: I remember recording it and thinking it wasn't right and then recording it again. And then hearing a demo, hearing a rehearsal recording and thinking, "That's better. Why don't we do it like this?" And all judgment sort of goes out the window, when you do it like that, sometimes. I remember doing the high voices at the end, the high kind of pitch-shift voices. That was kind of a nod to the Smiths, I think.

Thom Yorke: I recorded the actual buzz from a fridge for that on the demo. It was partly the way of just expressing how some people just talk and they're not really saying anything. I just remember traveling around a lot, especially in America, and, like, modern rock was just like ... (imitates the sound of a loud fridge buzzing)

Nigel Godrich: "Karma Police" was recorded as a song in completion, and then when we went to a proper studio to go and record some piano. Thom and I went out for a pint and he sort of complained about how he didn't like the second half. "Can we construct something from scratch?" It's the first time we'd done that. From the middle section to the outro, it's a completely different technique of building up a song. It's not like the band playing. It's just samples and loops and his sort of thing over the top, which sort of was the forerunner of a lot of things to come, good or bad.


7. "Fitter Happier"


Nigel Godrich: I remember working downstairs in the library space. Dan (Stanley Donwood) had been upstairs writing short stories and getting Fred (the nickname for their Apple Macintosh) to speak them and he'd send them to his dad. He was just having this kind of conversational discourse, which we all thought was hilarious. But Thom had disappeared for a few hours. And he came down and just said, "Oh, I did this." Played it. And it's like, "Fuck. That's perfect."

Fred's voice is so unemotional. I've always been interested in voice synthesis, because it's such a sort of bizarre juxtaposition of technology, trying to communicate verbally, which is what we do naturally. It's a very, very, very flat kind of delivery. And so that was clearly something that moved all of us. And then he had his Dictaphone stuff, which had the piano on it, which is just him at home. And I had all of those electronic sounds of stuff that I was just making out of experimental stuff in the studio. And then Jonny scored the strings to his piano thing and Thom added some dialogue from Three Days of the Condor he'd taped off the TV.

Thom Yorke: (The final line "a pig in a cage on antibiotics") was from a book and then I did some reading up about it. It was the first time I'd ever really read anything about farming stuff. The fact that we're pumping the animals we eat full of antibiotics before we buy 'em, which are then going into our bloodstream, making us resistant to antibiotics, bah, bah, bah, bah, bah.


8. "Electioneering"


Thom Yorke: I was reading (Noam) Chomsky for the first time and (makes a fart noise with his mouth). We were endlessly glad-handing like politicians. "Hi, how are you?" "Hi, it's good to meet you." "You guys are great." "Well, thank you for your support." We had to meet a lot of people and I wasn't the best at it, but luckily other people in the band were. Colin, especially. He could talk you into the ground if necessary.

We had (Tony) Blair coming into power and there was a lot of optimism in the air, but I think a lot of it was really self-serving. Some good films got made, good music got made, bah, bah, bah. And there was for a brief moment in Britain the belief that the politics could be removed from self-interest and removed from vesting interest. But then it was obvious within months that wasn't gonna happen.


9. "Climbing Up the Walls"


Phil Selway: (Because of the ghosts) I probably went to bed with the duvet pulled up to my nose every night. So the album did have that slightly wired feeling to it, which I think you can hear in "Climbing Up the Walls."

Thom Yorke: That one's a bit of a mystery to me, to be honest. I used to work in a home for the severely mentally ill for a while in this little village. And I remember one of them escaping one night – he was perfectly harmless, but he was really ill. I mean he couldn't be out in society anyway. But because it was in a little village it sort of stuck with me. This idea of this guy in the middle of a field and the police chasing him.

Then I had read some newspaper piece about about a normal domestic murder where obviously the person concerned was not well. I was fascinated in a kind of twisted way about what is it that makes someone who can go through life and just snap one day and do something that you can't possibly imagine. And it was in the context that people don't get looked after like they should. Depression for example at the time was something that everybody just went, "Oh, well, you're just depressed." But now it can lead into other things like if someone gets ill, they can be a danger to themselves and to other people. That's what I think about when I play it now.


10. "No Surprises"


Colin Greenwood: That was recorded at Canned Applause in our rehearsal room. It's a song that has something to say about now as well as then.

Thom Yorke: (The line "Bring down the government/They don't, they don't speak for us") has become this weird thing, it gets this weird reaction (when we play it now). But again that was written on a shitty bus journey. A two-hour bus journey with a bunch of old-age pensioners in Britain. I don't know why my car wasn't working. It actually wasn't a political thing at all. It was like, "Why have people like this been dropped? Why are we just left to rot? If this is a democracy then they should be helping us. Why aren't they helping us?" It was just that.


11. "Lucky"


The song was recorded in 1995 for the War Child benefit project The Help Album.


Nigel Godrich: We did it in five hours. They were actually on the road. I had only heard the song on a cassette. They showed up and we set up – they played it the night before onstage. So they'd worked it out and we just did it and I mixed it. And I tried later on to sort of remix it (during the OK Computer sessions) and it was like, "No, it's fine." That really is the beginning of OK Computer, that day.


12. "The Tourist"


Thom Yorke: That's a classic situation where Jonny had written this incredibly slow, moving riff so I started singing about slowing down and we were traveling, endlessly traveling, endlessly. Everything was about speed. Everything was moving so fast. I had that sense of sitting in looking out a window and things moving past me so fast you could barely see them.


Nigel Godrich: The final thing you hear on the album is a triangle. It was played by Phil, I think.



The group recorded several songs that didn't make the album.



Phil Selway: "Lift," "Man-o-War," "I Promise," these were the songs that I think people at the label were looking at thinking, "Yeah, there we go. That's gotta work." And we delivered an album that didn't have them on there, even though they'd been recorded. So I think probably, initially, we probably wrong-footed quite a few people.


VII: The OK Computer Tour


From May of 1997 through June of 1998 Radiohead were on the road supporting OK Computer. They hired documentary filmmaker Grant Gee to chronicle the crazy ordeal.


Grant Gee: It was mind-blowing, really. Right before the album came out I filmed a press event in Barcelona. They had the top floor of this hotel and there were journalists circling outside in the corridors. And then the door would open and then Ed would be in there and then someone would go in and another door would open, and there would be Phil. It was just this kind of bizarre procession. In every available space it seemed like there were photo shoots going on. From the start it was quite clear that they were quiet and articulate people being put through this industrial process of sort of being vacuumed for image and information and quotes and thoughts. That might have brushed off their backs if they were thick-skinned, but I got the sense they were going to react in a thin-skinned kind of way.

Thom Yorke: Partly we were told that's what we had to do all this, and partly we thought, "Let's really fucking go for it. Let the machine do what it needs to do and we'll try to give it as much as we can." But you end up feeling pretty fake really quickly. Talk about yourself enough and you'll feel fake. I was doing about five interviews a day. I got to a point where I couldn't do even one before a concert. I was kind of a basket case for a bit.

Ed O'Brien: There was a sense of, "You have to get to a place where you've earned the right to say 'no.'" We needed to pay our dues.

Colin Greenwood: Thom was having a tough time. He was definitely having a tough time. Especially those U.K. arena shows (in November of 1997). I remember he was very spun out from the whole thing. Because I think he was fighting hard for things to have meaning after the repetition of doing the same thing over and over. But if we hadn't done all of the stuff that we did then, I wouldn't be sitting here talking to you now.

Phil Selway: We really did enjoy the shows, but at a certain point the imposter syndrome starts to kick in pretty strongly. Because you're thinking, "Do we warrant that kind of platform at the moment?" We started to feel a little fraudulent.

Thom Yorke: During this whole period Michael (Stipe) took me under his arm and was trying to look after me.

Michael Stipe: It's just not an easy thing to have that level of adulation thrown at you or deal with people wanting you to be everything at once for them, personally, for their community or for their generation, for their country, for their philosophy or ideology. I mean, it's ridiculous. And what's really ridiculous is you start to believe the things that you hear, and that includes the critiques. I do remember telling Thom simple things like, "Don't forget to breathe." I think if you find yourself in a near panic state over one thing or another it's good to have someone who can just talk you off the ledge.

Jonny Greenwood: Grant tended, just by chance, to come by on some of the darker periods of that whole time. There were also joyful, happy things going on as well. But there are times you're in Northern Germany and the lights are going out at four in the afternoon and it's freezing cold and Thom has a sore throat and you're worried about the next few gigs. And then six months later you're playing at some joyous Portuguese place and it's the noisiest, most exciting room you've been in.


Ed O'Brien: Grant is brilliant. Every time he came out, he always found us at a kind of crisis time. But there was levity. There was light. There was a lot of fun. I've seen a bit of Hi8 footage that I took around that time when I had a video camera. We're goofing around and having fun.

Grant Gee: I'm sure they did have fun, but I honestly never saw the whole band having a great laugh together.

Ed O'Brien: By the end of that tour we were exhausted. I mean, from '93 through to '98 when we finished that tour we just had January of '96 off. That was the only time. We just kept doing it. Our manager said, "You can't really stop until you've got to a place where you can take some time off and people aren't going to forget you." So we got to that place and then it was just kind of like, "OK, we're here. Right. OK. Now we can breathe."

Thom Yorke: It was obvious that (our manager) Chris (Hufford) pushed us – especially me – too far. At the end he said to me, "You've earned the right to disappear."



VIII: The Aftermath


Thom Yorke: I remember after the tour Nigel and Michael (Stipe) were mixing an R.E.M record (Up) in New York. I wanted to go see them because they're two of my favorite people in the world and I needed something to do.

Nigel Godrich: The day came and we heard nothing from Thom. Michael and I looked at each other, and we're like, "Shit, what do we do?"

Thom Yorke: I didn't even call them. So they both went to the airport, JFK, to greet me. And I didn't get off the plane and they freaked out. No idea what had happened to me and called me, I didn't answer. They were freaking out.

Nigel Godrich: We knew we couldn't call home because it was the middle of the night and that would freak them out if he did leave. That was kind of a bit of a, "Fuck, what do we do?"

Thom Yorke: I can't even remember why I didn't go or where I went.

Nigel Godrich: I was fucking pissed off at him. When we tracked him down I said, "Don't do that again!" And apparently what happened was he was on his way to the airport and he just decided to turn around him and go home. But he didn't want to let us know.

Thom Yorke: I was just so out of it. That day was a real low point for me because Michael was my fucking hero. I remember going to dinner in New York with him. He always does this. Just when we're leaving he'll go, "Oh, yeah, we're going with U2 and there's going to be this belly dancer too. It's gonna be great." I'm like, "You bastard." But it was a nice evening. The was something where I'd normally be like, "Fuck off, no way." But he was gently forcing me into these scenarios.

So when the tour ended I got a house in Cornwall, which I'd always wanted to do, and I tried to get a life. That involved spending a lot of time walking the moors and walking along cliffs and drawing and trying to find some space for myself and waiting for the monologue to stop in my head. Friends forced me into situations like going to the local pub and sitting and talking to normal people.

That bit was OK, but (I was) working too a lot longer because whenever I started to work the analysis would start, this self-analysis and self-doubt. Looking back, I don't think the band stopped for long enough. We were building a studio, so there was a big delay, but at that time I was working in Cornwall on songs like "Hunting Bears."



While they were taking time off, Radiohead-inspired groups like Travis (whose 1999 breakthrough LP The Man Who was produced by Godrich) and Coldplay began hitting the scene.



Thom Yorke: Oh, did they? (His voice dripping with sarcasm) They're still there, aren't they? I was really fucked off about that because they were doing that and they'd deny it. It's one thing to say, "We're influenced by this." But then were doing it and slagging us off. That wasn't cool. (Note: To be clear, Yorke didn't reference a single specific group.)

Nigel Godrich: Something would come on the radio and he'd look at me funny and I'd be like, "What are you so upset about?" He'd be huffing and puffing like someone copied him. I'd say, "You're just imagining it. Look, it's a guitar with some drums behind it. You didn't invent that. You were copying someone else. Just relax." I think that's a byproduct of being so focused on what he wanted to do that he figures he's the only person that's ever had that idea. (As far the Travis comparisons) I just think that's lazy journalism. It's a guy singing in falsetto with an acoustic guitar. But if that's what made him go away and do something different, at least it lead to more interesting times.

Thom Yorke: This big flashing neon light over my head went off that said, "Meanwhile in the rest of the fucking universe, this is happening." And I started blindly buying all this stuff from Warp Records and inevitably getting into Aphex Twin and all this stuff and wanting to buy synthesizers.

It was difficult for the others (in the band) 'cause when you're working with a synthesizer it's like there's no connection. You're not in a room with other people. It was a big mistake on my part because I insisted we would record everything even it was unrehearsed, so it was impossible to know what the fuck was going on. I made everyone's life almost impossible. But I was sort of trying to create freedom, but actually I was doing the opposite.

Ed O'Brien: Thom sort of dragged us into Kid A in a way that hadn't happened before. He was listening to this stuff over here, this electronic music. And we were like, "Oh ... OK." Trying to figure out how that would work in a band context was kind of tricky. We also just didn't take enough time off. We finished touring in the middle of '98. By the fall of '98 we were rehearsing for Kid A. We were at Canned Applause, rehearsing. So we did end up back in the studio in January '99. And we were still reeling. We were having growing pains.

Thom Yorke: They didn't really know what to contribute, which I completely understood. But I just knew we weren't going to repeat OK Computer. We've never been able to repeat anything.

  

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Austin
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Fri Jun-16-17 02:23 PM

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22. "RE: Good ol' Nige:"
In response to Reply # 21


  

          

>
>
>Look, it's a guitar with some drums
>behind it. You didn't invent that. You were copying someone
>else. Just relax.
>

On the mark. Very lulzy.


os·ti·na·to
/ˌästəˈnädō/
noun
a continually repeated musical phrase or rhythm

http://austinato.bandcamp.com

https://www.discogs.com/lists/Favorites-of-2017/332378

  

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obsidianchrysalis
Member since Jan 29th 2003
5940 posts
Fri Jun-16-17 10:59 PM

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23. "Really enjoyed reading this"
In response to Reply # 21


  

          

  

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natenate101
Member since Apr 21st 2015
473 posts
Sun Jul-16-17 02:23 AM

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27. "Could've read 3 more pages of this "
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Thanks for sharing.

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
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Sun Jul-16-17 05:13 AM

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28. "you're welcome"
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yes

  

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c71
Member since Jan 15th 2008
8356 posts
Thu Jul-13-17 08:05 PM

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24. "computer program fun - spin swipe"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

http://www.spin.com/2017/07/radiohead-hidden-computer-program-ok-computer-easter-egg/

https://youtu.be/JDM5YBS6KMc


See the Vintage Computer Program That Radiohead Hid Inside the OK Computer Reissue

Andy Cush // July 13, 2017

Leave it to Radiohead to come up with one of the most beguiling musical easter eggs we’ve ever seen. As Gizmodo notes, some intrepid Redditors discovered that the recent reissue of the band’s landmark 1997 album OK Computer contains a hidden computer program, designed to run on a vintage machine called a ZX Spectrum. And the code isn’t written out in the liner notes, or included on a USB drive, but embedded as audio within the music itself.

The deluxe box set edition of OKNOTOK contains what is described on Radiohead’s web store as a “C90 cassette mix tape compiled by the band, taken from OK Computer session archives and demo tapes.” Users on Reddit’s Radiohead board realized that the sound that opens the tape is the startup music from the ZX Spectrum, an ’80s 8-Bit computer from the UK that was used to create some sound effects on OK Computer’s “Let Down.” (Reddit also has a full tracklist for the cassette, if you’re interested.) From there, a Redditor realized that the end of the cassette contains an audio message designed to be fed into the Spectrum, which ran programs from cassette tapes. After some tinkering, another Redditor named Maciej Korsan got it working on a Spectrum emulator and uploaded the results to YouTube.

After some startup blips and bloops, the Spectrum displays the following message: “inside your home computer are… Thomas Yorke, Colin Greenwood, Jonathan Greenwood, Edward O’Brien, Philip Selway, Nigel Godrich, & Stanley Donwood. 19th December 1996. scroll?” The date on the program suggests it was created during the sessions for OK Computer.

After that, it’s a lot of bright 8-bit colors and even more blips and bloops for a few minutes. See the full video of the program below.


According to the Redditor who uploaded the video, the program’s code itself also contains a hidden message: “congratulations….you’ve found the secret message syd lives hmmmm. We should get out more.”

Syd, I’m guessing, is Syd Barrett, the late and troubled mastermind of Pink Floyd’s earliest material. As for whether the band should “get out more”–well, if they’re working on records as good as OK Computer, they can stay inside for as long as they like.

  

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Madvillain 626
Member since Apr 25th 2006
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Thu Jul-13-17 11:44 PM

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26. "I love "Lift" so much"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

keep it funky i probably go back to The Bends the most out of all the Radiohead albums

-------------------------------
If life is stupendous one cannot also demand that it should be easy. - Robert Musil

  

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cbk
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Wed Jul-19-17 04:00 PM

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29. "Got my box set yesterday"
In response to Reply # 0


          

I'm usually last for deliveries from them, so that was a nice surprise.

PRINCE beat tape https://chrisp.bandcamp.com/album/17th-day

D'ANGELO beat tape https://chrisp.bandcamp.com/album/smack-your-ass-pull-your-hair

INVISIBLE
http://chrisp.bandcamp.com/album/invisible

冥々
http://chrisp.bandcamp.com/album/--2

  

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