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 # Radiohead: Played In Full

Okay, this isn't word for word, because I literally had to sit in front of a tape and write stuff down by hand, then pause it, rewind it, write.. etc etc. About 8 sides of wrist acheing text...Please ignore my typos. Here we go

MTV Bloke: Okay, I'm really excited you guys agreed to do this. We have a whole lot of material to run through. And we pulled a bunch of questions from your fans, so thank you for sitting down with us and lets get started. Now, you recorded all the songs from Kid A and Amnesiac in one session?
Thom: Yes we did, although some people seem to think that Amnesiac was a panic reaction to Kid A. Especially in Britain, which is hilarious.

MTV Bloke: Why do you think they get that impression?
Colin: Well, cuz it came out so soon after the last one. Heheh
Thom: But they obviously didn't realise that it was done at the same time.

MTV Bloke: Why didn't you release Kid A and Amnesiac as a double-album?
Ed: Because it wouldn't have worked... Quite simply.. Y'know... Double-albums, lots of songs on there you have to work.. *pause* The tendency with a double album is if there's quite dense material on there... You tend to skip it. You dent to move on. And we were adamant that on these songs... We realise maybe on first listen, it wouldn't come to you. But it warranted coming back to it. And it wouldn't happen on a double-album.
Thom: If we'd put it all together, it'd be a massive overload.
Ed: It'd be too much, yeah.

MTV Bloke: Can you tell me the story behind Pyramid Song?
Thom: Yeah... It's sort of difficult to explain though.. Uhm.. *long pause* It's funny cuz that song literally took 5 minutes to write, yet it came from all these mad places. Y'know what I mean? Sort of like something I never thought I could actually get across in a song, and lyrically. And I sort of managed it and so... I was really chuffed. And it was just uhm.. Lots of stuff about Hawkings..?
Phil: Steven Hawkings
Thom: Y'know.. he talks about time, and the idea that time is completely siplicle (sp?). It's always doing this *spings finger around in circles*. It's just a factor like gravity. And it's something that I've found, sort of, in Buddhism too. And that's what Pyramid Song is about. Pyramid Song is about the fact that everything is going in circles. It's not a desperate attempt to avoid death... It's not a desperate attempt to avoid life passing you by. Getting old, all that sort of stuff. That's all just bollocks. It's great. It's just this really beautiful thing that's just going 'round and 'round.

MTV Bloke: It seems now that Radiohead is the only major label band that is allowed to take these huge artistic and stylistic risks. Why is that?
Ed: Not for any longer... I think. Haha
Thom: We ended up on the wrong side of the fence when the bombs went off.
Ed: Also, y'know, OK Computer sells 4 and a half million records. So it gives us some leeway.

MTV Bloke: But not everyone that sells 5 million albums decides to go into a studio and play around with noise and turn down guitars.
Thom: They don't have to do that.
Colin: That's their perogative. That's fine.
Ed: We wanted to, though. Even before all this started. We talked about this stuff and strangely enough, it came to fruition. It was kinda... "Oh? We can actually do this kinda thing? Hey, hey, hey! What can we spend the money on?" *all laugh*"
Colin: Oh God.
Ed: And we bought a fucking studio, y'know. I mean, for years we felt guilty about doing all this stuff, or didn't have the means. But now it's like, why not? What the hell?

MTV Bloke: Do you ever worry that by experimenting so much for Kid A and Amnesiac that you'll lose some of your fans?
Thom: Kid A and Amnesiac were not that much of an experiment, really. *laughs* They weren't!
Ed: It's true!
Thom: I mean, it's not fucking rocket science y'know. I mean, compared with some of the music we listen to, it's pretty fucking mild.
Jonny: If we wanted to be obscure, we'd do a much better job of it.

MTV Bloke: What's it been like taking songs from like, Kid A and Amnesiac, that seem to rely so heavily on studio production. And then taking them out on live tour?
Jonny: I kind of don't. I dunno. It's more about being prepared to take any instrument in any combination on tour and y'know, not feeling like a spare part just because you're only playing tamboureen. I think we get pretty close. I hope we get pretty close. I mean, it's not studio trickery. There are so many of us! Sometimes we have 3 guitars playing all at once. Which is a bit rare.

MTV Bloke: Does America seem different to you... 3 years after the OK Computer tour?
Thom: *starts laughing*
Ed: Yeah, very. I think just in terms of how we are as a band. How we viewed things 3 or 4 years ago on tour. I remember it being a really dark time and we really did not enjoy touring America at all. In fact, it was a fucking nightmare. Because we suddenly found ourselves in big arenas at the end of the tour. And we were not in the right frame of mind to be doing that. But we did it. We realised we had to come back and play. But it's frightening. I don't really think any of us enjoyed that last American tour at all. I mean, if I'm honest, there were moments... But now it's so different, we're actually enjoying it.

MTV Bloke: Did having such a bad experience on the OK Computer tour scare you from touring again?
Thom: Yeah. Me especially. Just the touring thing, everything. To me, it was a long series of having to deal with these ghosts in my cupboard and they were all coming out one by one. The touring thing especially. I really didn't think that I could deal with it... At all. I just didn't think I could cope. And I can't really explain to you why. Other than, as Ed was saying, at the end of doing OK Computer, and we were doing these really stupidly big gigs. Uhm. It was like, I dunno. Like there was suddenly 40,000 people in here *taps head*, and I'd left. Haha. And now I don't have that. Now it's like "Hi, nice to meet you, thanks very much.." That's it.

MTV Bloke: Do you guys wanna take some questions from your fans?
All: Okay.
Question: "This is for Mr Yorke. Do you have any recollection as to the meanings and moods behind Amnesiac?
Thom: Yeah, oh God.. Loads. Uhm. Revolving Doors for example, is something that happened in my brain where... Like, Alice in Wonderland. Is it Alice in Wonderland? Where she walks down the corridor and there are lots of different doors. I was sort of in that corridoor, mentally for 6 months. And that was an extremely central part, for me, what I was writing. Cuz every door I opened, it was like, dreading opening it. Cuz I didn't know what was gonna happen next. See, that makes perfect sense!

Question: Why are some of the tracks spelled in an unconventional manner?
Jonny: *points at Thom* Cuz he can't type! *all laugh.. Thom sticks thumbs up*
Colin: It's a knackered old typewriter though, isn't it?
Thom: I'm in a hurry.. Haven't learned to type.
Colin: And it's missing keys and everything. But you've got to work with what you've got, haven't you?
Thom: And that's what I've got! Haha...

Question: Do you want to tour the USA, or do you feel you have to tour the USA?
Jonny: The enjoyment's sort of kicking in now.. Rather than three years ago.
Thom: Touring in America is very good at making you do sort of, lots of stuff... Like, histrionics, I'd call it. You do stuff that makes you go "Woah" *pose*, and you do this move here, and this move here, and everything's scripted because it makes everyone go "woo!". But I'd much rather be someone like Miles Davis who just turns his back on the audience and listens to what everyone is doing. Cuz that's why they're there... They want you to fucking play!

Question: Could you discuss the term 'concept album' and how it applies to your work?
Colin: Oh God.
Thom: I'm not doing that.
Colin: The only time we think about that is, we spend like a week putting the songs together at the end. We choose things that will sound good after each other, but before that they're all individual things.
Thom: OK Computer. For people to suggest that's a concept album... That's franky terrifying.
Colin: Yeah but it is to them, though.
Thom: Yeah, it could be to them. But to us, the only concept we had, was that it was gonna be called OK Computer. That was all we had for the record. The title.

Question: Can you guys tell me what your studio looks like?
Jonny: Messy.
Thom: There's a collection of old vintage computers, too. Which of course, we don't know what to do with. But they look great! And uhm... There's lots of tapes all over the place, that we can't remember what we put on.. A lot of gear. When we built it, we wanted it to be a house as well. Somewhere we can just hang out. But, we built it and then the moment it was built, we started work on Kid A and Amnesiac.. And, right now it is literally a bomb site. Kind of what we've always dreamt of having was like a neutral space that we could all go and do our thing in. And it's no one in particular's.
Phil And it looks just like when we actually did live together.
Thom: Smells the same.
Colin: Jonny never does the washing up.
Jonny: What's washing up?

Question: How do you guys feel about the fact that bands like Coldplay, Travis and Muse are making a career out of sounding exactly like your records did in 1997?
Thom: Good luck with Kid A!! *laughs*

MTV Bloke: It's been 10 years since you guys have basically been signed as a band. What would the Radiohead of 2001 say to the Radiohead of 1991?
Thom: Haha... haha... *ahem*
Phil: There's going to be a dark moment in about one and a half years when you record a song called Pop Is Dead. Don't do that!
Thom: Yeah. Forget about the 'rock' thing a little earlier. Take it easy! Don't be quite so hard on yourself around '97, '98. And attempt to get a life of some desicription, because it tends to help.

MTV Bloke: In October 2000, you sat down for an interview with us and said you heard Fake Plastic Trees and didn't recognise your own voice and actually made you happy. I was wondering if you could explain that a little...
Thom: That's why I still say what we do is like pop music. There's an element of it that is supposed to be disposable. Personally speaking, I have a really short attention span anyway, and usually I don't remember things 2 or 3 months later.

MTV Bloke: Do you guys get bored of things easily too?
Jonny: Yeah, but I think it's more positive than that, though. It's more like a hunger for new things, rather than getting bored with what's lying around... There's always so much to find and... Yeah.

MTV Bloke: In 1978, NASA sent out Voyager the space probe, with a whole soundtrack from Bethoven to Jonny B Good in an attempt to contact alien life. If you could put any song on there, what would it be?
Jonny: I got a bit obsessed with all of that. I've copied out the list of music you're talking about in my notebook. All the things that people thought summed up 'good music', so I know what you're talking about. As for what I'd choose... I think they got it about right, in a way.

MTV Bloke: On Kid A and Amnesiac, even OK Computer there's so much recurring sci-fi imagery...
Thom: Is there?... Right.
MTV Bloke: Subterranean Homesick Aliens? Paranoid Androids? Clones called Kid A?
Thom: Yeah, I know... but I wouldn't..
MTV Bloke: Ice ages coming and..
Thom: Is that science fiction, then? Maybe.. yeah. Yeah.
MTV Bloke: Wouldn't you say so?
Thom: Yeah...
MTV Bloke: Well, why all the futuristic imagery?
Thom: I don't know... I really don't know. I don't even necessarily think it's in the lyrics, it's even in the music as well. The whole atmosphere of it. I read a Ray Bradbury book halfway through doing the record. 'Martian Chronicles'... And uhm, the way he describes.. It's about people living on Mars who live on their own. In the middle of nowhere. And the music they listen to. And it was like, that's how we should sound.

MTV Bloke: After you performed on Saturday night live in 2000, you held up a 'Let Ralph Debate' sign... Do you regret that at all now that George Bush Jr is President of the United States of America?
Ed: No. If you're insinuating that George W wouldn't have gotten in if people hadn't voted for Ralph Nadrer, that's bollocks. I think he got a lot of people to vote for him. He was the whipping boy of the Democrat Party. Apparently they were furious.
Colin: I mean, Gore didn't get his own nomination.
Ed: In his own State!
Colin: Nader won his own State... And Nader wasn't standing there.
Ed: It really gets my goat when people say that, because, Gore was an imbecile, he didn't even win his own state. What does that tell you?

MTV Bloke: Do you guys ever have any interest in scoring movie soundtracks in future?
Jonny: Uhm, yes. We're trying things out... We're trying to turn our studio into something that can do that. With old televisions and video recorders. We're trying to work out how to do it.
Thom: If we do it, it has to be a fairly chilled out thing for me because, having never done it, we could fuck it up really badly.
Ed: It'd be ain interesting thing to do though, because you don't have the final say, a director does. And if he says 'right, I need 30 seconds here', then you have to do it. And I think it'd be interesting to see how we dealt with that.

And that's that. My back is killing for typing that out.

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