Thom York performed a new song from his Radiohead breakout band The Smile. The Smile consists of Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinner and producer Nigel Godrich. Yorke was performing this new The Smile song alone, as it was part of his live show at the the Royal Albert Hall. It was Yorke’s first live show since the pandemic, and during his performance, he read a letter from Tom Waits called “it’s a virus.” The song Yorke performed is called “Free In The Knowledge.” It was shown being rehearsed on The Smile earlier this month on Instagram.
“Free In The Knowledge” features Yorke using his distinctive falsetto voice and combined ominous electronic synths in the beginning with Yorke playing the acoustic guitar. It is made up of cryptic and ominous lyrics about confusion and things not lasting forever. In the chorus of the song, Yorke laments “And this is just a bad moment// We are fumbling around” In the preface to the song, Yorke dedicated it to all the musicians out there that may have struggled during the pandemic.
The Smile was formed earlier this month and kicked off their formation with a surprise performance of some songs. Thom Yorke has been very busy in 2021, releasing countless remixes and playlists on his radioshows, and creating a compilation and remix album of Kid A and Amnesiac. Yorke also released a slowed down remix of his iconic Radiohead song “Creep.” Yorke had to cancel his US tour in 2021 because of covid-19 concerns.
Photo Credit: Raymond Flotat