Thom Yorke and Nigel Godrich from Radiohead’s songs soar with airy beauty in their new band Atoms for Peace.
There are some exquisite tracks by Radiohead, but they’ve always been to prone to brooding for me. My rather robotic friend Aaron was a big fan and we used to joke that the band simulated the presence of deep emotions.
I much prefer the new project Atoms for Peace. Thom Yorke seems to break out of his indie bubble. It’s expansive. Otherworldly.
Thom York started the band when he was recording his solo record The Eraser in 2006. If you haven’t heard it, it’s brilliant. Electronic sounds played with York’s crooning/wailing vocals and warm/cold instrumentation.
Changing the studio mix to a more collaborative group structure, Thom Yorke and fellow Radiohead member – producer Nigel Godrich took the name Atoms for Peace.
They hit the studios with new band members: drummer Joey Waronker (who’s worked with REM, Elliott Smith and Beck), Brazilian percussion master Mauro Refosco (who’s known for playing with the Red Hot Chili Peppers) and Red Hot Chili Peppers bass player Flea.
Atoms for Peace’s earlier single “Default” had the same uplifting quality as this new song “Judge, Jury and Executioner.” Briskly alive. Deep. Beautiful. Hope the rest of the album follows suit.
The full-length Amok comes out February 25th! Atoms for Peace are playing dates in London, New York and more. Visit their official site atomsforpeace.info.
Tune in to DJ Michele Myers Friday nights at 9pm on KEXP 90.3FM Seattle, kexp.org worldwide. Music historian and producer, Michele’s made over 200 radio stories for KEXP Documentaries. She’s also written scripts, lesson plans and features forThe Smithsonian, Experience Music Project, the University of Washington and NPR.