New Radiohead (everybody go crazy!)

Radiohead - These Are My Twisted Words
As the furor surrounding the release of In Rainbows proved, a new Radiohead album is a cultural event—so a new Radiohead song is worthy of a blog post at the very least.

About two weeks ago, Radiohead released “Harry Patch (In Memory Of)” as a £1 download, a song honouring the death of the final British World War I veteran. It’s a pretty tune, but by no means your average rock single: it’s mainly orchestral, and the are lyrics entirely made up of quotes from Harry himself. All proceeds from the internet-only single go to the Royal British Legion.

Then, last week, an unknown song called “These Are My Twisted Words” leaked onto the internet; the source was unclear, but it was obviously Thom Yorke singing, so people naturally assumed it was another new Radiohead tune. They assumed right. Today the track was released as a free download from the band’s W.A.S.T.E. shop; unfortunately, it appears to be another one-off rather than a preview of an upcoming record—this is especially probable since Yorke recently told The Believer that the band won’t be recording an LP anytime in the near future. But two Radiohead songs are better than no Radiohead songs, so who’s complaining?

The track sounds a lot like something that could have been on In Rainbows, with clean, hypnotic arpeggios, a dreamy wash of reverb and Phil Selway’s feathery drumming. After a rambling instrumental intro that takes up nearly half of the song’s five-minute-plus runtime, Yorke offers up up a woozy vocal line with typically cryptic, mostly indecipherable lyrics, sounding a bit like OK Computer B-side “A Reminder.” There’s no refrain, and Colin Greenwood’s bass groove is the closest thing it has to a hook. Still, it’s sonically gorgeous, and the haunting vibe is guaranteed to get under your skin. And you can’t argue with free.

Head over to the W.A.S.T.E. shop to download it.
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