Radiohead ignore ransom, release archives and donate profits to climate change

Radiohead have come up against an unidentified hacker after having 18 hours of unreleased material stolen from lead singer Thom Yorke’s archives.

The hacker announced the unfinished recordings from the mid-’90s would be released to the public unless the band paid $150,000. Bold.

Radiohead have ignored hackers’ ransoms and released 18 hours worth of archives from Yorke’s collection to the public, donating profits to a climate change foundation.

As a response, Radiohead have chosen to upload the music themselves via Bandcamp for £18, with all profits going to Extinction Rebellion, a climate change movement.

In addition to those earnings, Radiohead have authorised the use of their song Idioteque for the foundation’s promotional videos. Extinction Rebellion have thanked the band for their unprecedented support, sharing “words are inadequate but actions do change the world.”

The material, consisting of a huge 1.8 GB, will only be available for 18 days according to guitarist Johnny Greenwood, who said “it’s only tangentially interesting. And very, very long”.

The archives span between the years 1995-1998 with 18 tracks, each one being around an hour long. As a wise Greenwood stated, “not a phone download.”

The MiniDisc collection includes demos as well as a full-band version of True Love Waits, a song that was only released for Radiohead’s 2016 album A Moon Shaped Pool.