Tomorrow, Thom Yorke releases his first movie score via the official soundtrack album for Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria remake. Did he successfully rip off the Blade Runner score? Can he hang with bandmate and elite film composer Jonny Greenwood? We soon will see! And once we’ve dispensed with Suspiria-mania, it looks like the Radiohead frontman’s next solo endeavor is well underway.
As Reddit’s indieheads forum points out, Yorke spoke to the Spanish publication El Mundo about a new solo album he’s aiming to release next year. Translated back from Spanish to English, he says, “I didn’t have the wish to make politically charged music, but everything I do goes that way anyways. I’m trying to finish a record with Nigel [Godrich] and it’s going that way. It’s something that’s always there.”
Describing that record, Yorke continues, “It’s very electronic, but different to anything I’ve done ’til now. The method has been the opposite of depending on computers. It’s a weird process by which we made a song in the studio, we break it after that, we rebuild it with a live mix and it comes out different again, and that’s what we record. We’ve improvised with a lot of sounds and effects. It has been a very weird way to make a record, which is very exciting.” When asked, “Have you gotten bored of computers,” Yorke replies, “I always get bored.”
Presumably this new project involves some of the material Yorke has been performing on his solo tours lately. Speaking of which, he has one coming up in the US in November and December, but it’s curiously named after Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes, an album he released more than four years ago.
Elsewhere in the interview Yorke expresses his frustration at a lack of accountability for corrupt politicians thanks to apathy and hopeless resignation. He explains that because of a lack of consequences for fumbles like the UK government’s handling of Brexit, it’s getting harder to believe people can take to the streets and make a difference. He talks about the intense reaction Radiohead received during their recent North American tour when singing “Bring down the government/ They don’t speak for us” during “No Surprises.” And when asked, “Can music provoke a reaction in people?” Yorke responds, “Yes, when they listen to Kanye West,” followed by 10 seconds of what the writer calls “suffocating laughter and malicious murmuring.” I would love to have seen his reaction to Kanye’s White House visit.
Anyway, sounds like Radiohead fans’ next opportunity for feverish anticipation is this Yorke solo LP. If the band is working on a follow-up to 2016’s A Moon Shaped Pool, they certainly aren’t talking about it.