Thom Yorke – Anima review

by Phil Scarisbrick

The Radiohead front man has long flown the flag for electronic music- with his solo efforts diving head first into the territory that his band have utilised rather than fully immersing themselves in. Following on from his soundtrack for the horror film, Suspiria, Yorke now brings his unique brand of electronica back with the new record, Anima.

The album comprises nine sketches from Yorke – inspired by Flying Lotus’ live improvisations – that have been tightened up into fully formed songs by long-time collaborator, Nigel Godrich. The resulting record is both dreamy and unsettling, with Yorke skipping between his familiar falsetto and the lower register of his range. The music largely lacks any tangible percussion, instead utilising momentary glimpses of hand claps, bells and electronic mosquito bites that add little in cohesion, but plenty in tone. Pete Selway does make an appearance on Impossible Knots, with his accelerated drums being the album’s only real percussion, adding to the record’s most frenzied moment.

The accompanying Paul Thomas Anderson film – which you can catch on Netflix – adds a level of Inception-inspired visualisation to the music, and actually helps to make more sense of the auditory experience. The music itself is incredibly cinematic – with an abundance of colour and vibrant vignettes that flicker and drip into sepia and darkness. Though it doesn’t really break any new ground for Yorke, it is another memorable addition to his titanic back catalogue.

Secret Meeting score: 80


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