Main Index >> Media Index >> The Bends Media | UK Media | 1994 Interviews
reviewed by Radiohead's Thom E Yorke, assisted by Holly Barringer

Thom: “‘Yesterday Once More’ sounds like the Manics, a bit, which is really weird, which just goes to show that you could probably produce the Manics to sound like The Carpenters and they’d be huge. Yeah, that makes sense. So let’s have the Sonic Youth one.
(After one play) “Wow. They really know how to make records, don’t they? That’s amazing. The obvious thing is that the first thing you think is, like, Sonic Youth, so the first few times round it’s nice and quiet so you think, yeah, right, they’re just gonna lay into it any minute and they don’t. It’s great. So that’s a relief. And then, just, the sounds that… wow. No one’s going to play it, but it’s amazing. That should be on Radio One, that should be everywhere, that song. If that song got exposed everywhere, people would just f***ing drop. It’s that good.
“There was a lot less you could do with the Redd Kross one, but that song was just screaming to be done like that and they really did it. That’s the darkest thing I’ve heard all year. That’s darker than Portishead, and that’s a recommendation.”
“WEIRD! The reason I screamed ‘weird’ is that I heard that song yesterday in rehearsal because a band, some friends of ours, were doing a cover of it and I thought, Wow, that’s a great song, and here it is. So, yeah, that is brilliant and they’re American, aren’t they? The other day I heard the guy out of The Cult going on about how American bands are shit and how Britain is where it’s at now. This single just goes to show how wrong he was. I don’t think there’s any band in Britain who could come up with anything with that amount of suss and humour and sarcasm, you know? Everyone’s so f***ing uptight. American bands get lost a lot because they’re usually such brilliant musicians and all that sort of thing and they’re so heavily into the ethos behind what they’re doing that they’re not listening to what they’re doing, but this would be a song I’d put on a tape and play in the car. Power to them, it’s brilliant.”
“YEAH, yeah, it’s good, y’know. It’s Blur, I like Blur. They’re on our label. They’ve really got it down to a T – the thing they’ve wanted to do all along – they’ve got it down now. They know how to do it and I’m quite impressed with that. They’ve actually proved themselves, which is a difficult thing to do.
“This a really good song and it’s humorous, something that’s sadly lacking elsewhere. Is it as good as ‘Girls And Boys’? I didn’t like ‘Girls And Boys’, much prefer this. ‘Girls And Boys’ was a definite attempt at ‘it’, whereas this is just Blur being Blur, which is better.”
FOREVER (Anxious)
“AGE gracefully, Terry.”
“IT sounds like it might be their first release, doesn’t it? It sounds like a major record label signing the band and they’re probably a lot, lot better than this, but someone’s saying, ‘Guys, this is a great pop tune, blah blah blah’, and so they’re being put into a corner. It just sounds like they’re being pushed into a corner by somebody else. It doesn’t sound like them. They’re trying too hard, like all major bands do – I don’t know whether you’ve noticed. It’s a shame because, underneath, what’s going on is all right.”
FIVE BY FIVE (Matador)
“INTERESTING. It’s quite good. I think there’s gonna be a huge surge of bands coming out of Japan that are really quite good and will shock people. This is quite stylish, but it sounds again like the record company are quite heavily involved somewhere along the line.”
“IT hurts my head listening to stuff like that. There’s probably a harmless little song in there somewhere, but it’s just so f***ing harmless. Lame. Lame, that’s what it is. Lame. Harmless bollocks. No,  not bollocks. I’m sure Radio One will play it to death. I’m sure they are doing. It’s rubbish.”
“AURAL sculpture, isn’t it? Aural town planning. I remember going to clubs and it was the time when PWEI would come out and Sonic Youth were doing ‘Daydream Nation’, and you see where Sonic Youth are now and you see where Pop Will Eat Itself are now. I think that says it all, really. There’s no development – they could’ve done that 10 years ago. They did do that 10 years ago.
“I USED to like The Boo Radleys and I used to love the Pale Saints but this isn’t the Pale Saints to me. This doesn’t sound like the Pale Saints. Whatever particular trip they’re on, nobody’s gonna get it. Apart from the fact that the sound is just… so yuck, it’s like someone pouring toilet cleaner right over your head. That’s a shame.”
SUPERNOVA (east west)
“YOU can tell there’s a lot more going on inside her head than something like this. It sounds like she can write really good songs, but she’s tried to write this as part of the mould, and it’s come out a bit too late. Sometimes you can have a song and you just think it should be loud and fast and, that way, people will jump up and down a lot, whereas it doesn’t do the song any good. We’re certainly victims of that. You feel like you have to change a song round when it obviously doesn’t need it. This isn’t a great song, though. She can obviously write songs, but this isn’t a good one.”
MEMORY LANE (Periscope)
“EVERYBODY go out and buy it. Everybody buy this record. If you buy Oasis you might as well buy this as well. The Beatles are great, though, aren’t they?”
DRE DAY (Interscope)
“UM, music by intimidation. That’s what it is, isn’t it, really? We see it on MTV and stuff – y’know, when they bounce the cars up and down? MTV really hasn’t got a clue about what’s street, man, but Dr Dre is street, so I dunno. I do like some of that stuff; I think Cypress Hill are wonderful, but we don’t get exposed to it enough to make any judgment. I think Dre and Snoop Doggy Dogg have been picked up by their record companies, had shit loads of cash spent on them, had shit loads of exposure, so they became the acceptable face of what is unacceptable. It’s completely irrelevant whether they’ve got talent or not. I mean, I think Dr Dre actually has got something going for him because, y’know, they’re all silly keyboard sounds but it has a mood of its own, but I just feel intimidated by it. I can’t like music if the personalities who created it I find threatening or offensive. Sorry. Not because I vote Tory, but because I don’t understand it. I find it dull; it’s boring. It’s had loads of money spent on it and a lot of white people sit around going, ‘Yeah, this is great, and not knowing why. All I get is intimidation.”
CONFIDE IN ME (deconstruction)
“KYLIE gets serious; I read it in The Face. It’s like Saint Etienne and it’s really doomy. Shit, looks like doom’s in. Good job our next album’s really happy, isn’t it? It’s alright. Get played, won’t it? It’s Kylie, everyone loves Kylie. It’s a bit surreal, though. The figure of the late Eighties who has absolutely no artistic control over anything she does at all, suddenly comes back saying she wants to be taken seriously now. Maybe we should do that as well. Maybe everybody should do that.”
EVERYWHERE EP (Tongue & Groove)
“IF I went into a bar and this was playing, I’d know I was in the wrong bar. But it will be playing in lots of bars soon.”
MADAME YEVONDE (elemental)
“WHEN it started up I knew where it would go, it went there and then it stopped. It was quite good, you know… Okay, it’s not.”
“THE Collapsed Lung mix is really good, great sounds. You can blow your stereo up with it. It’s like a landscape, it’s quite empty and it’s really nice, but the vocals screw it up for me because they’re so dull. Take the vocals off and it’d be great; ambient, but really good.”
CAR SEX (Sony Soho Square)
“I HEARD she was gonna make a comeback, and this is it, isn’t it? Smacks of record company involvement again, to me. “
JUST A MISDEMEANOR (Abstract Sounds)
“IT seems like there’s a lot of aggression there which is overlooking everything else. It certainly alienates me listening to it because it’s not the sort of aggression that’s coming out in the right way. It sounds like the fact that they’re good live is to do with how quietly and then how loudly they con play.”