Thom Yorke’s new solo album receives one million downloads in six days

Thom Yorke

Thom Yorke

 

One week ago, Thom Yorke released his sophomore solo album Tomorrow Modern’s Boxes exclusively through BitTorrent, at a price of $6. “It’s an experiment to see if the mechanics of the system are something that the general public can get its head around,” Yorke explained in his announcement of the innovative release. It appears that experiment was a success, as more than one million people have downloaded the album over the course of the last six days.

Update: According to a representative for BitTorrent, the 1.1 million download total includes the free bundle in addition to purchases of the full album. “By the artist’s request, we are not disclosing sales figures,” the rep said. “But we have been very happy with what is happening.”

Yorke’s sales total is likely even higher thanks to vinyl sales, but that information has also not been released. Either way, Yorke made good on his mission statement of creating an “effective way of handing some control of internet commerce back to people who are creating the work. Enabling those people who make either music, video or any other kind of digital content to sell it themselves. Bypassing the self elected gate-keepers.” What remains to be seen, however, is whether artists of lesser stature can reap similar benefits with such a model.

Congratulations Thom.

 

Thom Yorke released a new album distributed via BitTorrent (download it now!)

Thom Yorke

Thom Yorke

The mystery of Thom Yorke’s secret new record has been solved: the Radiohead frontman has announced the release of his sophomore solo album, Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes.

Once again, Yorke has come up with an inventive way to distribute the album. It’s being released through BitTorrent, a move which he says, if successful, could revolutionize the music industry. Click here to download the album now.

“It’s an experiment to see if the mechanics of the system are something that the general public can get its head around,” Yorke explained in an issued statement. “If it works well it could be an effective way of handing some control of internet commerce back to people who are creating the work. Enabling those people who make either music, video or any other kind of digital content to sell it themselves. Bypassing the self elected gate-keepers. If it works anyone can do this exactly as we have done.”

As of late, Yorke has become a particularly vocal critic of online music distribution, calling into question the royalty rates of streaming platforms such as Spotify. He and Radiohead carried out a similarly innovative release with the band’s 2007 album, In Rainbows, introducing the industry to the pay-what-you-want format.

Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes serves as the follow-up to Yorke’s debut solo LP, 2006’s The Eraser. The new album spans eight tracks and can be purchased digitally for just $6.00. It’ll also be available for purchase on 180 gram white vinyl.

The opening track “A Brain In A Bottle” and its corresponding video can be downloaded for free here

Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes Tracklist:
01. A Brain In A Bottle
02. Guess Again!
03. Interference
04. The Mother Lode
05. Truth Ray
06. There Is No Ice (For My Drink)
07. Pink Section
08. Nose Grows Some02 Guess Again!

 

Radiohead launch PolyFauna app

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The app features imagery and sounds from ‘The King Of Limbs’ track ‘Bloom’
Writing about the app at Radiohead.com, Thom Yorke explained it as “an experimental collaboration between us (Radiohead) & Universal Everything, born out of ‘The King of Limbs’ sessions and using the imagery and the sounds from the song ‘Bloom’. It comes from an interest in early computer life-experiments and the imagined creatures of our subconscious.”
He then posted instructions on how to use the app, writing: “Your screen is the window into an evolving world. Move around to look around. You can follow the red dot. You can wear headphones.” The app can be downloaded through Radiohead.com.Last month, Radiohead’s Colin Greenwood said that Radiohead’s plans for a new album are “up in the air” as members of the band focus on side projects. Greenwood spoke to Drowned In Sound and revealed that he and his fellow Radiohead members are looking forward to making new music together but admitted that they are enjoying some time at home as the dust settles from touring their last album, ‘The King Of Limbs’.
Quizzed on current activity in the Radiohead camp, Greenwood says: “It’s all up in the air at the minute. Thom’s just come back from touring Atoms For Peace and he’s having some quiet time. I’m sorry to be vague but we’re all just taking it easy at the moment. Just enjoying being at home and hanging out really. But at the same time, the vibe is very much Oxford and all good! It’s like that.”Maintaining that live shows remain a long way off, Greenwood continues, “I wish I could say we were going to start work and put something out then spend 12 months on the road touring but we’re just enjoying being at home right now. We had the best time when spent the last two years touring ‘The King Of Limbs’. We all really enjoyed that. It was a really positive time. We definitely want to do it all again but we’ve just got to give it some time for the dust to settle. What I’m trying to say is everyone’s very happy and positive and looking forward to the next adventure.”

10 Biggest Selling Vinyl Albums Of The Year So Far

1. Vinyl sales in the UK are higher than they have been since 2003. The BPI and the Official Charts Company estimate that sales of vinyl albums could surpass 700,000 by the end of 2013. Here are the top selling vinyl albums of the year so far – starting at number 10, which is Black Sabbath’s album ‘13’.

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2.  Next up – at number 9, it’s Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ record ‘Push The Sky Away’. The NME review of the album back in February described it as “a masterpiece that merges the experimentation and freedom of their side projects with Cave’s most tender songcraft.”

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3.  The National returned earlier this year with their latest album ‘Trouble Will Find You’. That’s the 8th most popular album on vinyl in the UK in 2013.
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4.   Vampire Weekend’s magical third album ‘Modern Vampire’s Of The City’ – in at number 7.

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5.  Thom Yorke may not be a fan of streaming services like Spotify but the Radiohead man has long had an affinity for vinyl releases. ‘Amok’, his album with Atoms For Peace, is 6th.

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6.  Into the top 5 now. Queens Of The Stone Age ‘…Like Clockwork’ was released at the start of the summer. At the time it lost out in the battle for UK number 1 to Disclosure’s album ‘Settle’.
queens-of-the-stone-age-like-clockwork
7.  After a lengthy break Boards Of Canada released their new album ‘Tomorrow’s Harvest’ this year. NME’s review said: “’Tomorrow’s Harvest’ is a dark, often uncomfortable affair, more nuclear winter than summer anthem”. It’s number 4 in the list.
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8.  David Bowie goes top 3 with ‘The Next Day’. The legend took us all by surprise back in January by emerging from the shadows to release his first new album in a decade.
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9.  No surprise that Arctic Monkeys’ loyal following went out and bought their fifth album ‘AM’ in their droves. It remains one of the fastest selling albums of the year. Popular on vinyl too. In the month or so it’s been out it’s become the 2nd biggest selling album on vinyl of 2013.
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10.  And… 2013’s biggest selling album on vinyl in the UK so far is Daft Punk’s ‘Random Access Memories’. Not only is the music incredible, but there’s something about seeing that artwork blown up which makes it desirable for any collector of new releases.
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Atoms for Peace Hide “Before Your Very Eyes . . .” – Watch Clip

Thom Yorke hints at location with a tweet and emoticon

 
 
Atoms For Peace – Before Your Very Eyes

 
 

Atoms for Peace have hidden a video for their song “Before Your Very Eyes . . .” on their website. Frontman Thom Yorke tweeted a hint to the video’s location yesterday afternoon following the group’s appearance this week at the Hollywood Bowl. “Aaah Blinkin’ Hollywood,” he wrote, punctuated with a smiley emoticon. “Thanks to everyone who came last night.” He then included a link to the group’s website.

The clip can be accessed after scrolling right and clicking the “Hollywood” sign, which indeed blinks. It then starts a download containing a PDF and link to the video, viewable here.

The video, directed by Andrew Thomas Huang (Björk, Sigur Rós), starts off with an undulating landscape to complement the dense percussion of the track, which leads off Atoms for Peace’s debut LP Amok. Eventually, a sepia-toned Yorke emerges from the mire, minus a good portion of his forehead. Things get far more colorful after that.

It’s another part of what has become a very busy year for the group, which formed in 2009 but didn’t release a full-length until this past February. In July, they took a stand against Spotify, removing their works from the streaming service, claiming it was “bad for new music.” A few months later, the group began an arena tour, which kicked off at Philadelphia’s Liacouras Center. And most recently, Atoms for Peace released a video of their complete performance at Austin City Limits Festival.

Thom Yorke: Spotify is “the last desperate fart of a dying corpse”

Thom Yorke

Thom Yorke – By Alex Young on October 3rd, 2013

“We are entering an age when potentially all creativity stops, the past informs the future, there is no other future.” ~ Adam Curtis

Earlier this year, Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Nigel Godrich pulled many of their own records from Spotify, including Yorke’s solo album, The Eraser, the full-length debut by Atoms For Peace, Amok, and the full-length debut by Godrich’s Ultrai­sta. The artists cited Spotify’s unfair royalty payments and declared, “Someone gotta say something. It’s bad for new music.”

Yorke continued his crusade against Spotify during a recent interview with Mexico’s Sopitas.com:

“I feel like the way people are listening to music is going through this big transition. I feel like as musicians we need to fight the Spotify thing. I feel that in some ways what’s happening in the mainstream is the last gasp of the old industry. Once that does finally die, which it will, something else will happen. But it’s all about how we change the way we listen to music, it’s all about what happens next in terms of technology, in terms of how people talk to each other about music, and a lot of it could be really fucking bad. I don’t subscribe to the whole thing that a lot of people do within the music industry that’s ‘well this is all we’ve got left. we’ll just have to do this.’ I just don’t agree.

When we did the In Rainbows thing what was most exciting was the idea you could have a direct connection between you as a musician and your audience. You cut all of it out, it’s just that and that. And then all these fuckers get in a way, like Spotify suddenly trying to become the gatekeepers to the whole process. We don’t need you to do it. No artists needs you to do it. We can build the shit ourselves, so fuck off. But because they’re using old music, because they’re using the majors… the majors are all over it because they see a way of re-selling all their old stuff for free, make a fortune, and not die. That’s why to me, Spotify the whole thing, is such a massive battle, because it’s about the future of all music. It’s about whether we believe there’s a future in music, same with the film industry, same with books.

To me this isn’t the mainstream, this is is like the last fart, the last desperate fart of a dying corpse. What happens next is the important part.

Yorke went on to relay his recent conversation with Massive Attack collaborator Adam Curtis in which Curtis said, “We are entering an age when potentially all creativity stops, the past informs the future, there is no other future.” Yorke continued:

“And, it’s like, ‘fucking right, man.’ You know, people like us and him and Massive Attack we need to be standing together. Bullshit, it ain’t over. It’s like this mind trick going on, people are like ‘with technology, it’s all going to become one in the cloud and all creativity is going to become one thing and no one is going to get paid and it’s this big super intelligent thing.” Bullshit. It’s hard not to think about it all the time, because to me it’s the most important thing happening in music since when… it’s like when the printing press came out.”

Listen to the full interview below. Yorke’s comments about Spotify kick in around the 17:30 mark.

(2013/09/29) Reactor 105, Rulo David, Thom
Radiohead’s interviews’ archive