The Smile (Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood & Tom Skinner) Debut “Skrting on the Surface”


Adrian GarroCategories:Latest News

Rock Cellar Magazine

When The Smile, a new musical project featuring Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood and Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinner, introduced themselves in early February with a trio of global live stream performances from London, it was apparent that the group had plenty of material already in the can beyond the couple of songs they’d debuted to that point.

On Thursday, another of those songs was premiered. Titled “Skrting on the Surface,” the elegantly arranged composition can be heard below in a video depicting Yorke toiling away as a coal miner. The clip was directed by Mark Jenkin and filmed at the Rosevale Tin Mine in Cornwall, England.

Jenkin hand-developed the 16mm black and white film used to record the video using water from the mine, as well:

The origins of “Skrting on the Surface” go back for a while, as York has performed the song live either in solo gigs or with Radiohead off and on for about a decade.

It’s the third single shared thus far by The Smile, joining “You Will Never Work In Television Again”:

And “The Smoke”:

Stay tuned for more from The Smile, who have yet to announce a full-length debut album … though that seems to be on the way.

And click here to read Emily Herring’s recap of those London live stream gigs. A preview:

Throughout the gigs, they constantly swapped instruments, alternating between guitars, bass, synth, and harp, sometimes all at once (you haven’t really lived until you’ve seen Jonny Greenwood play the piano and the harp at the same time). Skinner, a jazz drummer at heart, masterfully provides the syncopated structure for this whole thing to breathe. With long-term Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich behind the wheel, and Greenwood’s orchestral abilities, The Smile’s first studio album promises to be exceptional.



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