I have almost nothing to say on the subject of Radiohead. I barely know anything about their music, because Iíve never liked it. Itís not a value judgment on their personhood or anything ó itís just not for me. The only person in my immediate life who likes Radiohead is my dad, who also happens to be pretty much my best friend in the world. Heís super smartĖ heís a journalist and a tech wizard, and heís also a huge music nerd. He also, historically, doesnít take shit from me, so I figured I would ask him to explain why Radiohead is good, rather than sit here and write about why I donít like them.
It always feels when we start up like we still donít know really how to do it, and we don't know quite what to do. 'Looking down avenues' is a very kind way of putting the kind of fumbling that we do, mainly because every time we try and do it like the last time Ė because that worked Ė it never seems to work. So we talk about different approaches and weíre currently trying a bunch out.
Thom Yorke (Radiohead) just released a new solo album called Tomorrow's Modern Boxes for sale on BitTorrent for $6. There's also a new video for the lead single "A Brain In A Bottle," available for free here. Hit the replies to read a letter Yorke penned about the release. You think this format is going to work? Do you just wish it was a Radiohead album instead?
f course, Radiohead's fanbase has since sprung into action theorizing what, if anything, Yorke is trying to convey with the image. Because of the fact that Radiohead reportedly has just started making its new album, this probably isn't a tease that the album is being pressed quite yet. It's possible that the record could contain some new music from Yorke's second band Atoms for Peace ó in the background of the image, you can see artwork in the same style of the group's 2013 release Amok.
And yet, applied to acoustic classical music, all bets are off. I don't trust microphones or speakers for that, whether it's recorded or played live. They approximate and inflate rather than distil and concentrate. And with sonically complex contemporary music such as Ligeti or Penderecki, mics and speakers make things sound harsh and discordant. The live experience is far softer, stranger and more colourful than two speakers can put across. If you haven't heard it live, you haven't really heard it Ė and yet 90% of judgments on classical music are made from hearing...