Thom Yorke was interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. Thom talked about the physical release of ‘In Rainbows’, his favourite song from the album and the upcoming tour.
Thom explains why Radiohead needed to release ‘In Rainbows’ on a conventional CD: “Because 80% of people still buy physical records. So we’d be stark raving mad to not address that. We didn’t want it to be a big announcement like ‘Everything’s over. Except the internet. The internet’s the future.’ Cause that’s rubbish. It’s really important to have an artefact as well, as they call it, an object.”
Melodies do seem to be right up front again. Was that a conscience decision?
Thom: “There was a conscience decision to focus on the voice. And I guess from the that it became melodic by necessity really.” (…) “They were the best songs we had at the time. So obviously they were the ones we chose to record.” [laughs]
Nude stretches back 10 years?
Thom: “Yeah, that was 97. I remember that was written when the whole ‘OK Computer’ thing kicked off. It never really had a place, till now.”
Do you have a favourite song from the record?
Thom: “Videotape. I wanted to put it first, but somebody pointed out it if we did that people would turn the record straight off. [laughs] I like it because it very much happened despite me. And the others took reigns on it. Turned it to the stripped down thing. Personally speaking, I think this is the best thing we ever created, cause it has this inexpressible substance thing going on, behind what’s the specifics of the song. So I’m really really proud of that.
You’re famous for your environmental work and then people would say: ‘Big band on a big tour. How do you square that?’
Thom: “Not very easily. We had one of those carbon footprints things done. There’s a few things we can change. The really mad thing about it is… I guess it’s obvious, but it’s the massive people travelling to one place. That’s the really big impact overall. Us moving around has an impact and we can reduce the flying of equipment and we can put it on a ship. Can we go round by ship? ‘Yes, technically speaking if we were in the freight containers. And when we’re prepared to be on the sea for two weeks, that would be more ecologically sound. But if you’d like to go on the Queen Mary, for example. That’s actually worse cause they’re so heavy.’
So I think the idea so far… we got as far as: we’re playing municipal centres and cities and so on, that have public transport systems. So there’s at least an option for people travelling other than singularly in a car.”
Listen to the interview on the Today website.