Tuesday November 22nd, 2011 15:58

Demo Tracks: Radiohead

Radiohead

Allow us to take you way, way back in time, to the days when renowned alt-rockers Radiohead went by their original band name, On A Friday. It was 1986 in Oxford, England, when the young unknowns first recorded a demo tape comprising a couple of tracks. ‘Everybody Knows’ and ‘Girl (In A Purple Dress)’, as they’re called, haven’t seen the light of day till… well, now, when a fan of the band has seen fit to dig out and dust off these historic works for our listening pleasure.

Lacking the defining sounds of present Radiohead guitarist, Jonny Greenwood – who hadn’t yet joined the band when the songs were made – the demos are missing the sophistication and offbeat angularity that make Radiohead’s contemporary music so groundbreaking. Yearning saxophone drone ‘Everybody Knows’, in particular, dates pretty poorly. But it’s ‘Girl (In A Purple Dress)’, with its early echoes of the band’s fluttering rhythms and minor key shifts, that makes for a promising predecessor to Radiohead’s 1990s glory days.

So, if you happen to catch the band, living high on the critical success of their new album ‘The King Of Limbs’ on their US tour next February, think back to these demos. Perhaps they’ll even play them, for old time’s sake.

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‘Everybody Knows’:

‘Girl (In A Purple Dress)’:

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Thursday November 3rd, 2011 15:58

First Listen: DOOM, Thom Yorke and Johnny Greenwood

DOOM & Radiohead

As part of its tenth anniversary celebrations, London-based alt label Lex Records has announced news of ‘Complex’, an exclusive ten-track compilation album featuring artists signed or connected to the label. It includes a collaboration between masked rapper MF Doom – or DOOM, as he prefers to be called at present – and Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood. Each of the ten tracks on the record will be made available digitally one by one over ten weeks, before the full compo is released on picture disc vinyl in January, but we have a stream of the DOOM, Yorke and Greenwood track here for you now.

Sounding far superior to its unfortunate title, ‘Retarded Fren’ features Thom and Jonny purely in a production role, crafting a beat that grates against eerie sound effects and strings inflections. DOOM, meanwhile, projects a solid vocal complement, rhyming with slow, creeping inevitability. To hear all that for yourself, Pitchfork has a stream of the track here.

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Thursday October 6th, 2011 12:58

Album Stream: Radiohead

Radiohead

The full nineteen-strong set of remixed tracks from Radiohead’s ‘The King Of Limbs’ (as drip-fed in pairs since July) is now available for streaming over at The Hype Machine. The two-disc compilation, entitled ‘TKOL RMX 1234567′, is slated for release on October 11. Listen to it below.

Thom Yorke et al are also due to take over Ustream TV site Boiler Room, broadcasting direct from an invite-only event at an intimate London venue. Yorke will DJ alongside guest ‘TKOL’ remixers including Jamie XX and Caribou. Tune into the Boiler Room site on the October 11 (from 3pm – 6pm EST/1pm – 3pm PST) to experience the show in all its secondary glory.

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Tuesday July 5th, 2011 11:58

New Remixes: Radiohead

Radiohead

Always a band to take risks in the name of creating bold and adventurous music, Radiohead have relinquished control of tracks from their current album ‘The King Of Limbs’, putting them at the mercy of a host of DJs and mix experts. The venerable alt-rockers plan to drip-feed the reworked songs at intervals throughout the summer months, or, as team Radiohead put it on their blog, “until we run out of remixes… or summer”.

Kicking off the series is a glistening Caribou mix of album standout ‘Little By Little’, which is paired with a polished, propulsive edit of ‘Lotus Flower’ by Canadian producer Jacques Greene. Stream both mixes below via Radiohead’s Dead Air Space blog.

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Tuesday June 21st, 2011 10:01

New Track: Radiohead

Radiohead

Having sent critics reeling with their dense and difficult new album ‘The King Of Limbs’ (and not to mention Thom Yorke’s body contortions in that ‘Lotus Flower’ video), Radiohead have provided fans with a premature glance at their upcoming ‘From The Basement’ studio session.

The band posted up a performance clip of new track ‘Staircase’, as accompanied by a quote from drummer Philip Selway, who cleared up the mystery of the pair of identical-looking bald percussionists who feature in the video. “No, you’re not seeing double. The doppelganger drummers are myself and Clive Deamer. Clive has long been one of my favorite drummers and so I was really excited when he agreed to perform with us. Hope you like what we’ve all done”, he said. Well, that explains that, then.

The full session will be aired on British television as of next month, but there are sure to be clips available on the ‘net for international viewing. As we await those with baited breath, view ‘Staircase’ in all its subterranean electro-prog splendour below.

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Wednesday June 1st, 2011 14:00

New Cover: Weezer

Weezer

Weezer have thrown fans for a loop with their note-perfect rendition of Radiohead’s ‘Paranoid Android’, which was originally a hit in 1997. Both iconic rock bands from a similar era, the two groups have always occupied different ends of the musical spectrum, hence the online community’s mixed reactions to the new cover.

Weezer generally plump for a more immediate, hook-heavy sound, while Radiohead have always trodden an alternative path fraught with tricky, tangled arrangements and futuristic themes. So it’s an odd spectacle to see one group reworking the other’s material. Odd, and, in this case, surprisingly good.

Refer to the in-studio video below to watch the worlds of Weezer and Radiohead collide as Rivers Cuomo and co go from prep to prog with their full-length paraphrase of ‘Paranoid Android’.

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