Thom Yorke Ė The Eraser
I actually only recently heard that Thom Yorke was coming out with a solo album so being the huge Radiohead fan that I am you can guess I was particularly excited. The band Radiohead has been around for quite sometime, spanning nearly twenty years as a group, and have released a whopping six mind-blowing albums. The band has always been known for their originality and dedication throughout the years but since day one there has always been one man that has really been at the reins, his name is Thom Yorke.
To start off it should be noted that Thomís album is very reminiscent of his bandís former albums. The only difference is the use of electronic beeps much more frequently than Radiohead. So if you want to sum up the entire album you could say itís like Radiohead with an electronic twist.
Yorkeís opener is entitled The Eraser
which begins with a subtle pulse with Thom playing the piano in the background. Itís a great way to start the album because it opens a window for the listener to tell them what exactly theyíre in for. For me this opening song really showed me that Thom can sing, itís particularly obvious by the end when his emotional ďooooooohĒ closes off the first track. When all is said and done itís one of my favourite tracks on the entire disc and will more than likely be one of the most memorable tracks on the CD.
Following behind The Eraser is Analyse
. Personally I can see why this track would be quickly discarded by non-radiohead fans but to those who have grown to love Radiohead and their music will really appreciate this one. The song keeps its overall feel that you get from listening to the first track so by the time you reach analyse on the CD youíre going to know what kind of music youíre really getting into. That being said itís not the best or worst track on the album but it should definitely not be ignored.
Sitting at the 1/3rd mark rests The Clock
. This is Thomís chance to get political on the album, as he talks about Throwing coins in the wishing well, for us
and you just move the hands upon the clock
. Since Thomís such a blow-hard for keeping global warming to a bare-minimum I believe the songs about that. If you go into the song with that mindset you can appreciate his work a lot more. Lyrics without meaning are the thorn in present societyís side.
is the next track and still remains to be in my top three tracks for this album. It has such a calming tone about it that it makes it somewhat eerie. For instance when Thom boasts out the lyrics ďAnd it's fucked up, fucked upĒ
without the slightest hint of irritation or uneasiness it just hits me like no song has before. Itís hard to explain, youíll have listen to it to understand.
[i]Skip Divided[i] is probably the most upbeat song on the album where Thom breaks out of the soft sounding shell to do a bit of a louder song. The weird part of the song is that itís supposed to be a bit more upbeat but it still retains its soft sound to it, itís almost like itís somewhere caught in between. Itís not my
favourite track on the album but itís still fairly good, though if there was a rule that there had to be one miss on every album this would be the miss.
Atoms for Peace
is an awesome song. It has to be said, this song is just great. It has such a peaceful sound to it, in fact itís so peaceful I may try use it to help me get to sleep tonight! Throughout the entire track it has a somewhat muffled xylophone beat going on in the background that would calm just about everyoneís nerves. One of my favourites for sure.
Nearing the end of Yorkís tracks lays And it rained all night
. The songs a great follow up to Atoms for Peace
because after the previous track youíre sort of craving for more of the same, and luckily with this track you get it. Thom hits some high notes in this one, in fact itís probably the highest Iíve heard the guy sing in a long while. This can be seen as positive or negative pending on how you like your music, but if youíre a Radiohead fan than youíll love this track.
The albums first single is Harrowdown Hill
and it shows up as the second last track on the album. A lot of my friends are digging this song and praising it as the best on the CD yet I just donít see it. Sure itís an O-K song but it just doesnít really do it for me. It might be the fact that its one of the ďdifferentĒ sounding tracks on the album but overall I just donít like it as much as the others. In the end itís not terrible by any means but itís just different and personally I think it questions the integrity of the albumís overall sound which isnít cool in my book.
The albumís closer is Cymbal Rush
which lies in around the five minute mark. It is by far the most electronic song on the album as itís always accompanied by beeps amongst other things. The song sort of has a progressive feel to it as in it begins in a certain way and then moves along a path onto another sound; the one thing that youíll realize about this song is that you donít want it to end because when it does thatís it for the eraser.
This album is really something special; itís a blend of simple sounding beats and rhythms that just work. It could be the fact that Thom has an amazing voice to sing with but when itís all said and done his first attempt as a solo artist was a successful attempt. My one and only problem with the album is the fact that itís all centered around electronic beats and thuds, for the most part it works wonders but it would have been interesting to see how he could have experimented with other forms of song. For me a lot of it sounded like Backdrifts
off of Hail to the Theif. I doubt if he made another album in this way he would be able to get away with it. All in all Radiohead fans rejoice, Thomís solo career worked like a charm, he has created a wonderful album. Hereís hoping for a sophomore album from Mr.Yorke!
Top Three Tracks
1. Black Swan
2. The Eraser
3. Atoms for Peace