Back in February of this year, without any build up, Radiohead announced the release of their eighth studio album ‘King Of Limbs’. Only a day or two prior to this the blogosphere had been set alight with the emergence of the music video for debut track ‘Lotus Flower’.
Directed by Gareth Jennings and choreographed by Wayne McGregor, the video features singer Thom Yorke (complete with bowler hat) performing a strange kind of interpretive-jazz dance (for anyone that has witnessed Yorke’s live performances it could be said that a showcase such as this was long overdue). Filmed in black and white, Yorke’s erratic movements are manipulated in and out of time with the music, the simple use of imagery helping to make one of the most memorable videos of the year.
‘Lotus Flower’ itself is a carefully constructed collage of organic and electronic sound. Jittering programmed percussion flitters around dub bass and Yorke’s immaculate falsetto vocals weave their way seamlessly throughout the track. ‘The King Of Limbs’ certainly marks a distinct shift in the bands direction, with more of an emphasis around the electronic sound Yorke has been honing in his solo work and less so around the traditional rock formula of previous records.
The song received three nominations for Best Rock Performance, Best Rock Song and Best Short Form Music Video at this years Grammy’s. A remix album of ‘The King Of Limbs’ entitled ‘TKOL RMX 1234567′ was released in October and features some of the bands favourite contemporary producers including; Modeselektor, Jamie xx, Four Tet, Nathan Fake and Caribou.
Everyone’s favourite band, Radiohead, continue on their full disclosure to fans quests by releasing two demos that were recorded in the mid-1980s, when the band were called On A Friday.
The demos – which surfaced via YouTube user Klootme – are the earliest known demo tapes, recorded in 1986. “The remixes on the end are reportedly bizarre sort of dub versions where the vocals pretty much cut in and out at random. It was apparently recorded at the music room of Abingdon School,” according to Poptart, What’s Our Mission?.
Klootme explained the history behind the demo tapes: “My husband was at school with the band and partied with them (before Jonny joined them!). Phil was at Uni with us both in Liverpool. The demo was given to my husband at 17 in school. We used to go and see them play in Oxford and were friends with them. They were fairly inactive from 1987 -1990 as a band. But when everyone had finished Uni they got back together and tried to make a go of it. They went to the States…we went backpacking to India for 6 months. Six months later we returned from India…saw Colin with a binbag full of laundry at the launderette….. ‘so much for the States’ we laughed… I remember seeing them in Oxford where me and my husband made up an audience of 6!”.
Radiohead have also recently posted three new remixes of tracks from their album ‘The King of Limbs’, which you can listen to on the NME’s site.
Bassist Colin Greenwood posted a message with the remixes: “Hello! Here are the three remixes by Anstam, Nathan Fake and Jamie xx that sadly didn’t make it in time for the vinyl release – we wanted to get them out because we’re big fans and wanted you to hear them too.”
Glastonbury festival should need little introduction. Since 1971 the festival has been using farmland in a usually sleepy corner of the British countryside to keep the hippy vibe alive, whilst throwing one of the hedonistic (not to mention muddy) parties imaginable. Unlike many festivals, Glastonbury’s music policy is truly all-encompassing: bearded folk singers, ancient jazz players and odd-ball North African troupes all feature alongside some of the biggest bands on the planet.
It’s also Glastonbury’s attention to detail that makes it special. Each year the organizers pock mark the 900 acre site with hugely imaginative, psychotropic, and downright weird areas of interest. Whilst headline shows on Glastonbury’s hulking Pyramid stage are sure to garner the most attention, there’s also a ton of must see bits of the site away from the throng. We’ve counted down some of the most interesting in the below 5 Minute Guide to Glastonbury 2011.
Glastonbury’s organizers are keeping tight lipped about who this year’s special guest performers are. In a recent interview with NME festival organizer Michael Eavis simply had this to say, “There’s nothing bigger, I can tell you.” 2010’s secret performers were Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood: the driving force behind rock legends Radiohead. If the Glasto crew simply repeats the caliber of last year’s act then festival goers are due for a treat. Rumored guest include The Strokes (Shazam’s prediction for the guest spot), M.I.A. and even Prince.
A giant mechanized, fire breathing spider perched up in the middle of the English countryside should be a memorable site in anyone’s books. But when you combine that with a series of big name DJ performances and thousands of face painted revelers, then you have something really special. Highlights of this year’s Arcadia itinerary include sets from Orbital and SL2 who will be injecting moments of ‘90’s rave nostalgia intro this post apocalyptic, arachnid loving arena.
Radiohead have done it again. Breaking all rules and expectations, the British alternative giants took the world by storm last Monday announcing their new album ‘The King Of Limbs’ would be available as a digital release from the 19th February. This time ‘In Rainbows’ pay what you like model will not be repeated. ‘The King Of Limbs’ website has all the details about the formats it would be available on: first as a digital download in both 320K mp3 and uncompressed digital quality wav. It can also be pre-ordered in a special edition described as the world’s first newspaper album. The record will have a later release on CD.
An air of mystery and anticipation surrounding its tracklist has just been broken. The first taster, ‘Lotus Flower’, shows no major departure from Radiohead trademark sound where a heavy bassline and Thom Yorke’s vocals are the main features. Its black & white video, however, brings some more surprises showing Thom Yorke’s unexpected dance moves!
Due to high expectation, the release of ‘The Kings Of Limbs’ has been moved forward one day. The eight track album can be downloaded now from here.
How do you follow-up 1997’s ‘OK Computer’, an album universally hailed as the best of the Nineties? In the case of Radiohead, by radically changing their sound and producing a record of similar resonance that, like their previous album, can be considered one of the best of the decade.
After achieving biggest band on the planet status, Radiohead announced they would embrace experimental electronica to reinvent their sound, thus generating rivers of ink and speculation. The band’s rejection of rock’s most conventional element –guitars- got the most traditional part of Radiohead’s fan base nervous. Therefore, ‘Kid A’ was surrounded in controversy from the first moment of its well-documented genesis. Despite this, the bold move paid off well with critics first and audiences later warming up to ‘Kid A’s’ new direction.
The indisputable influence of classics tracks such as ‘Idioteque’, ‘Everything in the Right Place’ or ‘The National Anthem’ has helped reshaping the sound of mainstream rock.
Kid A’ arrived in 2000 kick starting another hugely successful period for Thom Yorke and co. More recently, after parting ways with their label, their album ‘In Rainbows’ stirred a musical revolution; this time for offering a new “pay as much as you like” download model that’s been mirrored in all corners of the arts as the potential way forward.
Brazilian duo The Twelves first caught our attention in early ’08 when they released a string of killer remixes for the likes of Fever Ray, The Virgins and Black Kids. After winning plaudits from taste makers such as Annie Mac and Rob Da Bank, the band has recently signed to Eye Industries and racked up over 1.9 Million plays on their MySpace – no mean feat considering they’ve yet to release any of their own original material.
For a taste of some of their exclusive remixes and an insight into their record bags, follow this link to download their recent ‘The Twelfth Hour’ mix. Taking in everything from M.I.A., Radiohead and Jackson 5; ‘The Twelfth Hour’ mix is a great showcase for The Twelves high energy DJ sets which are propelled by strings of their own inventive and highly danceable edits.
The Twelves will play a handful of dates throughout December, including an appearance at the Laser Club night on the 11th at the Legion in Shoreditch, London. Those in the capitol on that date are strongly recommended to head down and see The Twelves – they may well be one of the acts to look out for in 2010.
Following hard on the heels of “Harry Patch (In Memory Of)” another new Radiohead track has been leaked, called “These Are My Twisted Words“. Appearing overnight on the No.1 Radiohead fansite AtEaseWeb, this new track, which has echoes of Weird Fishes/Arpeggi (In Rainbows) and Dollars & Cents (Amnesiac), has got the devotees pretty excited.
Adding to the interest are the cryptic info notes posted along with the track, which hint at a possible release of something on 17th August. Fans have speculated that this could be an EP alluded to by Thom Yorke in a recent interview in Believer magazine.
Harry Patch, the last remaining veteran of World War I recently died at the age of 111.
After refusing to talk about the war for 80 years, in 2005 he was persuaded to give an interview to Radio 4 which had a profound effect on Thom Yorke. Radiohead’s lead singer was inspired to write a song based on Patch’s emotive words and experiences, reminding our generation not to ignore the true horrors of war.
Recorded a few weeks ago and named after the veteran as a tribute to his memory, it was previewed this morning at BBC’s Today program. ‘Harry Patch (In Memory Of)’ can be now downloaded from the band’s website. All proceedings will go to the Royal British Legion.