by Jason Hicks
After setting the internet on fire last month with a new Radiohead single and a rumored EP that never materialized, frontman Thom Yorke revealed today that he has formed an impromptu band of sorts. On his blog this morning, Yorke said that he put the band together to perform songs from his excellent solo album, The Eraser, as well as some new tunes. Not only that, but the group will be performing a pair of dates at the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles this coming Sunday and Monday on Oct. 4th and 5th. As for what to expect, Yorke kept it fairly vauge, saying "we don't really have a name and the set will not be very long cuz ..well ...we haven't got that much material yet!" If you want tickets, paying exorbitant prices on Ebay is your only option since the shows sold out within minutes of going on sale this morning.
The band consists of Yorke, longtime producer Nigel Godrich, session drummer Joey Waronker best known for his work with Beck, multi-instrumentalist Mauro Refosco and. . . wait for it. . . wait for it. . . Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea! Godrich of course is a no brainer as he's been working with Yorke and Radiohead for most of their careers and Waronker seems a logical choice as Godrich has also produced several albums for Beck. But if you had told me last week that Thom Yorke would be forming a band with Flea on bass I would've gone ahead and told you that you might want to check your tin foil hat for holes because clearly the CIA still has control of your mind. I mean Yorke isn't exactly known for his well developed sense of humor and on the other hand you've got Flea who has a history of performing wearing only a sock. . . somewhere other than his foot. Not only that, but musically they're pretty divergent as well. I can't say I've ever listened to a Yorke or Radiohead track and thought to myself, "you know what this could use is some slap bass!"
While I'm sure that the formation of this band is no reason for Radiohead fans to panic, as I don't see it being anything other than a diversionary lark, it will indeed be interesting to see how it pans out. Who knows, perhaps this will end up being a foil to Radiohead's seriousness for an extended period a la R.E.M.'s Peter Buck and the Minus 5.
I myself hope that the show is taped and that I'll be downloading it by next week after which I can share my impressions with you, my beloved readers. It makes one wonder what stunt Yorke will pull off next, a track dissing Kanye West featuring Taylor Swift? I have to say, at this point anything seems possible.