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Hear Thom Yorke’s Chilly New Song for Greenpeace

“Hands Off the Antarctic” is featured on the environmental organization’s latest playlist

Kory Grow Oct 17, 2018

Photo: Tom Sheehan

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Thom Yorke throws his support behind an entire continent in his new song, “Hands Off the Antarctic.” The Radiohead frontman penned the shimmery, four-minute electronic instrumental for the environmental advocacy organization Greenpeace, who are running a “Help Protect the Antarctic Ocean” campaign. As his synthesizer blends blips with chilly, glacial washes of sound, a video for the song shows crisp, black-and-white footage of the continent taken from Greenpeace’s ship, Arctic Sunrise. Yorke premiered the song in London with a projection of the video on the city’s Marble Arch.

“There are some places on this planet that are meant to stay raw and wild and not destroyed by humanity’s footprint,” he said in a statement, according to the Independent. “This track is about stopping the relentless march of those heavy footsteps. The Antarctic is a true wilderness and what happens there affects us all. That’s why we should protect it.”

The track is one of many that Greenpeace have included in its Music for the Antarctic playlist. Other artists who contributed include the German punk group Itchy and the Israeli experimental composer Kutiman.

In other Yorke news, the artist has been slowly rolling out entries from his soundtrack to the upcoming remake of the cult horror classic Suspiria. The song “Suspirium” was one of Rolling Stone’s Songs You Need to Know last month, and he’s since released “Has Ended” and “Volk.”“There’s a way of repeating in music that can hypnotize,” he said at a film festival of the concept behind his work for the film. “I kept thinking to myself that it’s a form of making spells. So when I was working in my studio I was making spells. I know it sounds really stupid, but that’s how I was thinking about it. It was a sort of freedom I’ve not had before. I’ve not worked in the format of song arrangement. I’m just exploring.”

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