Left Behinds

The anti-andrewsullivan.com. Or, the Robin Hood (Maid Marian?) of bright pink Blogger blogs.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Thom Yorke is inarticulate.

Did OK Computer “uncannily [predict] our global culture of communal distress”? Maybe.

But interviewed, Yorke himself sounds like a British version of Keanu Reeves. A few highlights from today’s Fresh Air (after the jump because it turned out pretty long).

TG = Terry Gross
TY = Thom Yorke

TG: When you recorded that [Creep], what kind of future did you think the band had?

TY: Whoa. Um… [Giggles] Uh… I had no idea what I was doing, or—no idea about the future at all.

TG: What was your life like when you wrote it? The lyrics suggest someone with low self-esteem.

TY: It was very hip around then. It was kind of written when I was in college. We’d only just signed, I think, a few months before that.
[Awkward pause]

TY: I’m wondering if, I’ve read this and I know it’s no secret, that you’ve had an issue with depression over the years. How do you think that’s affected you as a singer or songwriter, just in terms of your subject matter or your tempos, the kind of mood you’re going for…

TG: I think it’s both destructive and highly creative, and in some ways it’s a blessing, because when you’re in the midst of it you hear things and see things in a different way. Some people do literally see things in a different way. Things actually get darker and sounds actually change, and blablabla. I find that in a way, my brain is set to receive other things. And you know the trouble with it really is that it’s debilitating as well, because you have an en—you have a problem—you don’t have energy. Especially in a band, but just generally, you know, to be creative, you have to have a lot of energy. And so you can be extremely negative unnecessarily, um… And over the years as I’ve grown older, and got gray hair, there are times when I just have to kind of chill out and go away and get my head straight. It’s really not a big deal, but at the same time I choose to talk about it, because I’ve always had a problem with the fact that people call our music depressing, because it’s like, what, you don’t get depressed? What, your whole life is roses, is it? That to me is like, you’re in denial, and you are the one with a problem. Yeah, I want to go out, I listen to disco music, I do this stuff, but it just so happens that I’m built to do this, this is what I do, I mean, that’s fine, you know, but… I think that’s why I chose to make a thing out of it, because it was, like, really annoying me.

TG: I know that after, or during the OK Computer tour, which ended up being a really long tour, it sounded like there were some real problems toward the end of it.

TY: There was just a general madness going on, and it started out as being fun, and then, um…ceased to be fun, and ceased to be, um…relevant…to the music. People just started projecting all this shit into me, which was just like, no no no.

TG: People were projecting things onto you?

TY: Yeah, I mean, when people come up and start talking to you, uh…in a certain way which I found really disturbing, you know, um, I’m a musician, I sing songs, that’s it. I’m not taking any of this, whatever, weirdness you’re giving me, it’s not my responsibility. And suddenly there was this responsibility to live up to this thing that was like, nothing to do with anything. It was like, there was some sort of feedback thing, feedback, noise, media noise, blablabla. Cultural crap. I don’t really understand why it was a problem. But it was. We should have been enjoying it. What happened ultimately was a good thing. Ultimately it was really quite an amazing time.

TG: From what I’ve read, there were times on stage when you were really kind of unraveling.

TY: Yeah. That was weird. I mean I don’t—I don’t know quite why…I think a lot of the shows were really big, and it was just…not…uhh…interesting.

It's okay, Thom. The boys understand.


  • At 6:25 PM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    Yeah, the Northamptonshire Keanu Reeves, indeed.

    I seriously think Radiohead is the most overrated band in the world. OK Computer is a great album, yes, but these people are not geniuses.


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

FREE hit counter and Internet traffic statistics from freestats.com