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Radiohead Side Project the Smile Set Release Date for Debut LP ‘A Light for Attracting Attention’

Trio of Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, and Tom Skinner share new single “Free in the Knowledge” ahead of album’s May 13 digital release

Daniel Kreps Apr 21, 2022

The Smile. Photo: Alex Lake

Following a string of singles, Radiohead side project the Smile have finally set the release date for their debut album A Light for Attracting Attention.

The LP will arrive digitally on May 13, with a physical release to follow a month later on June 17; the album is available to preorder in a variety of formats now. The album features artwork by Yorke and Stanley Donwood.

Ahead of A Light for Attracting Attention’s release, the trio of Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, and Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinner have shared one more single from the album, “Free in the Knowledge,” which Yorke debuted onstage at a one-off solo appearance in Dec. 2021 before the Smile recorded it for their upcoming LP. “Free in the Knowledge” is accompanied by a new video directed by Leo Leigh.

The Smile previously released the first single “You Will Never Work in Television Again,” “The Smoke,” “Pana-vision” and the long-unreleased Radiohead track “Skrting on the Surface,” the latter now serving as the album’s closing track.

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“The record still feels worth your time – both the time spent waiting, and the time we’re asking you to invest in hearing it – which is all I can hope for,” Greenwood wrote to fans on the band’s mailing list in announcing the album. “I’m listening to it constantly, long after I should have had enough, so maybe that’s the right, long-sighted view of this. I hope you have the same experience.”

The 13-track A Light for Attracting Attention was produced and mixed by longtime Radiohead collaborator Nigel Godrich and mastered by Bob Ludwig. In addition to the trio, the album features strings by the London Contemporary Orchestra and a full brass section of contemporary jazz players.

“I feel grateful that we managed, with Nigel’s help, to record these songs in a way they deserve,” Greenwood wrote. “And the singles released so far have been liked – as far as I can tell – which makes me feel dangerously confident in the rest of the record. As the all-knowing algorithm has it, if you liked that, you’ll love this, right? Hope so. Aside from anything, the brass and strings players who helped out – I really can’t wait for you to hear all their work too.”

Greenwood continued, “So yes, we’re properly proud and excited for everyone to have the whole thing – but, it’s been a drawn out process so far, with so many single songs released. I can only apologise for our tentativeness. Patience is a virtue, but then, so are sobriety and humility – and they’re not happening either.”

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In addition to the Smile, Yorke recently released a pair of solo tracks, “5.17” and “That’s How Horses Are,” for the final season of Peaky Blinders, and performed a rare solo gig where he dug up obscure Radiohead tracks. Following the release of their album, the Smile will spend the summer on tour in Europe; no North American dates have been announced.

A Light for Attracting Attention Tracklist

  1. The Same
  2. The Opposite
  3. You Will Never Work in Television Again
  4. Pana-vision
  5. The Smoke
  6. Speech Bubbles
  7. Thin Thing
  8. Open the Floodgates
  9. Free in the Knowledge
  10. A Hairdryer
  11. Waving a White Flag
  12. We Don’t Know What Tomorrow Brings
  13. Skrting on the Surface

From Rolling Stone US.


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