Radiohead have announced a remix series of their newest album, The King Of Limbs, beginning with remixes by Caribou and Jacques Greene. This is obviously pretty awesome. It’s also given me pause as I sat and thought about how different things used to be; way back in the day, there was a lot of talk about Massive Attack producing a complete rework of OK Computer. Can you even imagine that? It’s probably for the best that they didn’t, as a year later they unleashed Mezzanine and thus ruined their entire career by exhausting all of their best ideas.
What did we get instead? A couple of Climbing Up The Walls remixes by also-rans Zero7 and the now defunct Fila Brazillia. Miserable scraps.
Things really do change, though. In 2003 Four Tet was commissioned along with Christian Vogel for Hail To The Thief remixes, and by 2008 artists as diverse as Son Lux, Julianna Barwick, Flying Lotus and Diplo were queuing up to join the fun of the Nude and Reckoner remix contests online.
Could I have imagined fourteen years ago that Thom Yorke would be collaborating with luminaries such as FlyLo and Burial a decade hence? Well, obviously not as those artists weren’t even around then, but still. I think Radiohead’s reach is a great signpost for the massive genre-bleedthrough we see daily and take for granted in 2011. Y’know, in case you ever sort of think everything is rubbish, just cast your mind back and think, “Thank fuck we don’t ever hear any Zero7 remixes any more”.