An explanation as to why Radiohead became the awkward squd, from Phil Selway, drummer:

'After the end of touring OK Computer. we felt we were rapidly becoriiirig a caricature of ourselves. It was Just a case of wanting to go beyond that. KidA was the only album we could have produced together at the time. But .ve didn't set out to be deliberately obscwe.‘

With a sell-mocking laugh. Thom Yorke admits that the long and arduous process of recording Kit] A and .‘llilll(’.\l(l(‘ ‘was like driving a car and all the wheels are falling off. You're like. “no. no. I'm getting there. it's gonna be alright.” But those albums did their job: they pushed Radiohead oil in a different direction. opened tip new frontiers. and reminded them what was good about making music in the first place.

Yorke also experienced something of a reality check. ‘.\lay'be it‘s becoming a dad.‘ he says. his small features visibly glowing as he talks about his toddler son Noah. ‘When you become a parent suddenly you're in a hurry. You really grab what it is that you do then. because you realise how fragile it all is. lit made me realise what I . . . what I was . . . um . . . sort of. you know. uh. born to do really. Shit. That sounds really awl'ul.’ lle winees and stuttcrs. He may be happier as a l'rontman these days. but he still loathes the idea of being a rock star.

‘liut rather than having a problem with it. the usual guilt and paranoia and confusion and so on. I was like: "Fuck it: this makes me happy.”

The result: alter taking 18 months in studios around liurope to make their previous two albums. Radiohead recorded the backbone of Hui/ In the 'I’liirfl‘ in l.os Angeles in a pacy two weeks.

One of the reasons it’s called Hail to the Thief, as told by Colin Greenwood, bass player:

‘We wanted it to be a shouty title. cos the music's a bit shouty. for us. As opposed to something closeted and listened to through doors. The doors open on this record.‘

An impromptu analysis of Hail to the Thief, track by track, in the order the songs appear, by guitarist Ed O’Brien:

r 9 f')" is like: “You thought you knew Radiohead. us careering down that Amnesiac route. well . . That guitar plugging in. that's the energy. “Sit Down. Stand Up" keeps the momentum gorng, it's a different kind of song. It's also like the “Paranoid Android" of this album. “Sail to the Moon" is like you need a respite. “Backdrifts”. you've

sailed To the PIN)“ .r..."-:': " t'af as.) K)“. like the band playing ir‘ a s1: few/s 't-assuna“. t‘ But "\.‘.lhere Exit: and Yet. Beg Has a l‘i’o/ves type atr‘iosrfliere Suck Yeast: ii. .. .. need a rest from all tf‘e gr: '1‘.es. and '.:“.. n-ue‘ t'a'. «A: of Transformer, Dang Box-.aa piano {<in Il‘M‘.)

‘And while you're there. "ere'fl the r‘i..s:.‘ ’rt:"‘ i‘.l.i't: "The Gleaming" signifies a hit :3‘ a break. as .t{ t we t'w “Fitter. Happier" part of the record lht-ri .t a r‘ if iir‘ wrth "There There". You tltrr>‘.'. i". "l \‘.’ill" it. you have "A Punchur; at a \'.’ed<iir‘.i" \‘.‘r-".<r "t'.t‘l ha: a song like that. something that's (ti"lr :st siiiislil'i,. a 9’00“? WW3 lllllltl- "M,xomatosis" is l:ke. "‘«.'.ha‘. tl‘e fuck i that”? 'Scatterhrain' is another kind of restate. armi‘ "A Wolf at the Door". it's the l ittle lied lt-diriu ill‘ :ii Titr’t. if there is a hit of a fairytale thing going on.‘

lfwr‘ t'v- t‘li‘rl .f

Hail to I/It’ 'l‘lii'tff'is certainly a bew itching record. of a kind that no other band on the planet could hayc made. But it isn’t dark. weird. impenetrable or wilfully bonkers. charges that could reasonably be laid at the feet of its two predecessors. Like the the people who made it. it’s prrigrcssiy‘ely-minded yet rela\cd. undoubtedly bold. yet warmly welcoming. Approaching their third decade playing music together. Yorke. the (ireenwotxls. O'Brien and Selway sound well into their grooye.

l‘or his part. Thom Yorke has learnt to stop worrying. Ignore the criticism and the sllpc‘l‘lilllyc‘s. Be less hard on himself. learnt to keep going. "l’his is what it‘s about] he says. pointing to a copy (ll/[(11710 Illl‘ Thief. ‘Wc make this work. And I know for a fact that good art and good music have got absolutely nothing to do with postulation and endless chatter. I don't take it seriously any more. Which is kind ol‘a relief. Hopefully it‘ll carry on.' He beams.

A big influence on Radiohead, as admitted by Jonny Greenwood, guitarist:

‘Chris Morris —» stuff like Blue Jam and Jam. there's; mood there we're responding to or recogriise.’ What. the idea of messing wrth people's heads? ‘l' xar:tly. Completely. And Monty Python: we recognise ourselves Hi how they used to work.‘

Radiohead and Monty Python'.’ Well. it makes more sense than Radiohead and modern dance.

Radiohead, SECC, Glasgow, Sun 30 Nov (SOLD OUT) and P&J Arena, Aberdeen, Mon 1 Dec. See pop quiz on page 18 for a special Radiohead prize.


Essentially a one-man band. Virtuoso tart Matt Bellamy does albums packed with songs even more anthemic than “Flower of Scotland'. New Radiohead? Course not. they want to be the new Queen while actually being the new ELO or ELP.


Sullen. unshaven. anonymous and releasing songs of bone-melting beauty. they could be prime Bends-era 'head. New Radiohead? Hopefully not. Cast of Thousands suggests they might just develop into something elegantly brilliant and less self-conSCious.

N Y rk 7 If ‘Radiohead are just like 5000000 2002’ is the cry across the style bar you pollute with ew o e. your sickly, sun-starved pals, then take solace in four contenders for their crown.



HOPE OF THE STATES A CO—JOining of OK Computer-like melodicism and swooning strings wrth a dry weave top sheet of Pavement bittersweetness. New Radiohead? Probably. but COLild end up the new Godspeed You Black Emperor! if they're not careful wrth those bloody Violins.

COOPER TEMPLE CLAUSE lWOOllSlll'y'COfflllde sextet creating a virulent. if often derivative sound which sounds better in practice than on paper

New Radiohead? A ‘.'.’|lllllgfl(}853 to experiivient says but hedonistic antics mean the, iust ain't traumatised enough.

I 308 Ll‘v/O H’Q’l’lfflirs fr r are

Rad/(wreade g.g:;

Over the next few pages, we name the 50 gigs that will brighten up your autumn. Not that you're likely to go to all of them. Indeed, it's a physical impossibility. But every one's a winner, baby. And that really is not a lie. Nominations: Doug Johnstone

I The Thrills Carling Academy. Glasgow. 3 Oct. Cheery. chirpy west coast Americana from newtound Irish indie stars.

I Arab Strap Venue. Edinburgh. 3 Oct. Falkirk's fav0urite underground misanthropes are in their finest fettle ever.

I Bifly Clyro Barrowland. Glasgow. 3 Oct. Bright. young stars of Scottish rock. The new IdleWild in other words. See feature.

I Killing Joke Garage. Glasgow. 4 Oct. Return of veteran doom-laden rockers who influenced Nirvana. Foo Fighters and Metallica.

I Nashville Pussy King Tut's. Glasgow. 4 Oct. Sleazy. dirty Yank rock. 'MotOrhead With tits' in their own words.


I Ton-l Walker 92. Glasgow. 6 Oct. Assured and smooth old-school UK soul from youthful London songstIBss. Her immense debut album for Def Soul. Untitled. earned a Mercury Prize nominatlon but llve is where to see her at her best.

I Elvis Costello Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow, 7 Oct. Relentlessly innovative singer songwriter institution is back again, this time with an armful of love songs.

I 50 Cent SECC. Glasgow. 9 Oct. SOLD OUT. Eminem's bullet-ridden rap prodigy makes his Scottish debut. p