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Electro - Released October 26, 2018 | XL Recordings

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Electro - Released October 26, 2018 | XL Recordings

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Electro - Released June 27, 2019 | XL Recordings

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After the surprise release of his 2014 album Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes, Thom Yorke has released his third solo studio album (not counting the soundtrack of Luca Guadagnino’s 2018 film Suspiria) the more conventional way. Under XL Recordings, Anima brings us another dose of “electronic Radiohead”. Thom Yorke first showed us that he could successfully dabble in electro music as early as 2006 with his first album The Eraser, and even ten years earlier with OK Computer and the band’s various remixes. His vocals work tremendously well with technoid beats and he’s not afraid to alter them either, sometimes reducing them to a sample which can be cut, repeated and layered, like on the album’s opener Traffic.This album has plenty of spirit and a lot of heart. Produced by the trusty Nigel Godrich, it includes Last I Heard (…He Was Circling the Drain), a true masterpiece with its ethereal organ combined with drones, duplicated vocals and only a bass as the beat. The drones return once more in Dawn Chorus, a track that you should definitely add to your winter playlist, featuring Yorke’s unmistakable vocals with practically zero filters. Also worth a listen is I Am a Very Rude Person, a funny little funk track with a broken beat and various layer changes throughout. For this third solo album, Thom Yorke is clearly more confident in himself and his individuality. His music can be placed somewhere between Four Tet, James Holden, Burial or Caribou – all musicians/groups with whom he has worked, and his minimalist production style is a breath of fresh air in an industry that often piles on too many layers. Most importantly of all, this is clearly the work of a songwriter who pushes his own limits. © Smaël Bouaici/Qobuz
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Electro - Released June 27, 2019 | XL Recordings

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Electro - Released December 8, 2017 | XL Recordings

Three years after its “atypical” release on the peer to peer platform BitTorrent, Tomorrow's Modern Boxes is finally “officially” available. At the time, Thom Yorke had presented this second solo album with a tweet: “I am trying something new, don't know how it will go. But here it is.” Produced by Nigel Godrich, the eight songs sung by the leader of Radiohead reach heights of destructuring with muffled rhythms and staggering keyboards. All of which is of course devoid of any guitar chord. Like its predecessor The Eraser, Yorke openly walks the paths of an electronic soundtrack more experimental than anything else. But his anti-songs fascinate the ear. The singular voice of the man (who some may find irritating) binds these eight strips in a melancholic way. In concrete terms, we don’t really know where Thom Yorke is going, and yet we follow him with our eyes closed and our ears open. © CM/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released July 10, 2006 | XL Recordings

Distinctions Sélection du Mercury Prize
The Eraser, Thom Yorke's first album away from Radiohead, is intensely focused and steady. It doesn't have the dynamics -- the shifts of mood, tempo, volume -- held by any Radiohead album, and it's predominantly electronic, so it's bound to rankle many of the fans who thought Kid A was too unhinged from rock & roll. It's definitely not the kind of album you put on to get an instant shot of energy, and at the same time, it doesn't contain anything as sullen as "How to Disappear Completely." Since it is so balanced, it might initially seem unwavering, but the details that differentiate the songs become increasingly apparent with each successive listen. Despite a reliance on machine beats and synthetic textures, Yorke's untouched, upfront vocals and relatively straightforward lyrics should be enough to bring back some of the detractors; he would have no trouble taking these songs on the road with a piano and an acoustic guitar. "Black Swan," the standout, comes across as a less guitar-heavy and more subdued version of Amnesiac's "I Might Be Wrong." Peek beneath the surface and you'll see that there's a lot more seething involved: "You have tried your best to please everyone/But it just isn't happening/No, it just isn't happening/And it's f*cked up, f*cked up." The opener, the title track, asks the album's first set of probing questions, including "Are you only being nice because you want something?" Along with the thoroughly sweet "Atoms for Peace," it vies for the album's prettiest-sounding five minutes, elevating into a chorus of hovering sighs as Yorke projects lightly with a matter-of-fact tone, "The more I try to erase you, the more, the more, the more that you appear." On the explicitly political end is "Harrowdown Hill," anchored by a snapping bass riff and percussive accents that skitter and slide back and forth between the left and right channels. Yorke defeatedly states, "You will be dispensed with when you become inconvenient," and asks "Did I fall or was I pushed?" referring to Dr. David Kelly, a whistle-blowing U.N. weapons inspector whose death -- which took place following a sequence of events that led to a testimonial before a parliamentary committee -- was ruled a suicide. It's no shock that the album entails some heavy subject matter and sounds as close to a version of Radiohead minus four of its members as one can imagine. What distinguishes The Eraser from the Radiohead albums, beyond the aspects mentioned above, is its ability to function in the background or as light listening without the requirement of deep concentration. The constant stream of soft, intricately layered sounds, while not without a great deal of tension in most spots, can be very comforting. Yorke's assertion that the album isn't truly a solo release is accurate. Producer Nigel Godrich, whose relationship with Radiohead exceeds a decade, played a major role, contributing arrangements, "extra instruments," and enough influence to guide the album into its tight song-oriented structure. Without him, the well-executed album would've likely sounded a lot closer to the kind of stray-idea patchwork experiment that so many other long-boiling side projects resemble. And, to a somewhat lesser extent, Yorke needed his bandmates as well; some of the sounds were pulled and manipulated from a bank of the band's unused recordings. ~ Andy Kellman
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Electro - Released August 2, 2019 | XL Recordings

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 21, 2006 | XL Recordings

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Alternative & Indie - Released March 23, 2018 | XL Recordings

Collecting the remixes made available previously on 12" and through downloads, The Eraser Rmxs features eight of The Eraser's nine songs -- no one takes a stab at "The Eraser" itself -- in alternate form, while Cristian Vogel gets two turns at "Black Swan." Vogel's "Spare Parts Remix" teases out bristles and clanks, while his "Bonus Beat Eraser Mix" is centered around a contorting bassline funneled through hollow tubing. "It Rained All Night," the natural pick (title-wise, at least) for dubstepper Burial, didn't require much tweaking to sound almost exactly like a production off Untrue, with Yorke's voice made distant, wrapped around the same female voice heard in "Etched Headplate." The Field contributes another highlight, similarly converting "Cymbal Rush" into something that could pass as an original production -- racing ambient techno full of gentle palpitations. A fine companion to the album, and the similar artwork/layout (with a gold cover) is a nice extra touch. ~ Andy Kellman
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Electro - Released August 2, 2019 | XL Recordings

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 6, 2006 | XL Recordings

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 21, 2016 | XL Recordings

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Electro - Released December 8, 2017 | XL Recordings

Electro - Released February 22, 2019 | XL Recordings

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Electro - Released February 22, 2019 | XL Recordings

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