Watch Thom Yorke Debut New Song “Plasticine Figures” On Fallon
The hermit zone agrees with Thom Yorke. Right now, if all had gone as planned, the Radiohead frontman would’ve just wrapped up a quick North American tour with his Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes combo. (That trek has since been rescheduled for the fall.) But now, Yorke is stuck at home like the rest of us, looking even more wizardly than usual. It’s working for him. Last night, Yorke did a bit of conjuring on the remote version of Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show, debuting a new solo-piano composition called “Plasticine Figures.”
Yorke has been moving toward voice-and-piano minimalism recently; back in November, he played a solo-piano take on his own film-soundtrack song “Daily Battles” on Colbert. Last night, in his own mostly-dark room, we saw Yorke’s face as he sang what turned out to be an extremely pretty and sad song that could be arranged any number of ways.
You could interpret “Plasticine Figures” a bunch of ways. Over that slow piano figure, Yorke keens out, “Most malleable/ Plasticine figures/ Mold to suit your taste/ Happy to serve/ Happy to linger/ While you make up your face.” Yorke doesn’t write too many topical songs, but this could be a hymn to the workers who are forced to do the shitty menial low-paying jobs out in the world right now, making things convenient for the richer people who get to stay home. Or maybe I’m just projecting and it’s really one more beautiful Thom Yorke world-is-fucked song. Check out the performance below.
Right now, Yorke hasn’t announced any plans to release “Plasticine Figures.” It would be cool if he did, though.