Amok is a mental silent film that you re-shoot every time you listen to it. Once I was at the beaches of Santa Monica, another instance, silently cruising through the late night streets of Downtown Los Angeles. You may even find yourself playing out a scene atop the Hollywood Hills from Mount Olympus.
With something from Thom Yorke, this makes sense, and I think we had a feeling this album would have you interpretive dancing in your chair. Call this album the gourmet version of your singing-in-the-shower selections. Atoms for Peace is a part of the every expanding universe of supergroups, creating art outside the bounds of the traditional Record Label formulas. Many supergroups have focused on some sort of metal, rock, post hardcore stance (The Sound of Animals Fighting or Them Crooked Vultures for instance), but this band places a gold star in the chill, electronic rock supergroup column.
Atoms for Peace is comprised of course of Thom Yorke of Radiohead fame at the helm. Lead vocals, guitar, piano, percussion, and don't forget about that dancing. Flea, who you know from Red Hot Chili Peppers fame, plays bass for this album. If you were present when Thom played at Coachella a few years back, Flea was there too.
If the gorgeous layering of sound that Radiohead is known for is familiar to you on this album, you can attribute this to Nigel Goodrich. He has been called the sixth member of Radiohead for years, being their producer for many years. He's got the same duties as Mr. Yorke, and contributes his vocals now and again. Multi instrumentalist Mauro Refosco joins the team, likely because he is currently playing percussion for Red Hot Chili Peppers. He's a beast of a percussionist in his Brazil-by-way-of-New-York band, Forro in the Dark.
Finally we have Joey Waronker, know to most of us as the drummer for R.E.M. and Beck. With him at the drumming helm, and a host of other percussion talents, I see that the notion of "the product of getting together, getting wasted and listening to Fela Kuti" was correctly followed.
The album opens beautifully with Before Your Very Eyes..., a song that immediately had me imagining Flea ever so slowly dancing himself on stage, wildly rocking his head, being cheered by the crowd as he finally hits a note forty seconds in. If you were there with us at Coachella when Eraser was played in its entirety, you just got a little excited.
Default was likely the first song that you heard on the album, and makes Thom Yorke my official candidate for scoring any further Tron sequels. Either that, or a Metroid movie. The track is an 80's sci fi movie lovers dream, with mental paintings of grainy neon lights, and kids in bad leather jackets. Kavinsky and Thom should surely hang out.
Judge Jury and Executioner makes me want to shoot a video out on the Dunes of Guadalupe, Thom Yorke and another dance partner in long silks perhaps.
Amok is how you end an album. Just have Flea dance us all out like church!
Look, you guys get the idea. Albums like this are so complicated and wonderfully layered (that mixed with an insane case of ADHD) it takes a while to digest. Flea is obviously very near the helm on this, coming off his killer album with another supergroup, Rocketjuice and the Moon. However with albums of this caliber, you have the Chinese Food effect: thoroughly satisfied, but I'm gonna need more of this bad boy in fairly short order. For you Angelenos, we get two tastes of the band in both Hollywood and Santa Barbara Bowls on October 16th and 17th respectively. Tickets are on sale now, and can be found here!
Until next time my friends,