Thom Yorke - The Eraser

by Rich Morris Rating: Release Date:

"Don’t call it solo," says Thom Yorke of The Eraser, "It doesn’t sound right". Here, then, is the first – hmm, let’s say one-man record from the vocalist of Radiohead, an excursion in electronic beats and synthetic textures hailed by many critics as a return to Radiohead’s 2000 album, Kid A. Strictly speaking, though, he’s right – it’s not solo: produced and "arranged" by long-time ‘Head producer Nigel Godrich, featuring processed sounds taken from full-band sessions, and featuring at least one song originally mooted for appearance on Hail To The Thief, it appears as much an opportunity for Thom to build on the ideas not fully realised on full-band releases. Rock fans may lament Radiohead’s shifts away from guitar, bass and drums, but it’s hard to deny just how well Thom’s voice fits amid the hissy cymbals and spectral synthesiser of ‘The Eraser’ and ‘Black Swan’. Guitar surfaces on the haunting ‘The Clock’, Thom singing "You throw coins in the wishing well" over warped, droning folk, while album highlight ‘Harrowdown Hill’ strikes a rare explicitly political note for Thom, a track themed around the death of UN Weapons Inspector David Kelly. --Louis Pattison

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