I’m sure Thom Yorke hates the term “supergroup.” And if he cared, he’d probably hate my using it in the first sentence of the review for his new group Atoms for Peace. But when you interrupt your day job fronting one of the world’s biggest acts to form a band with the bassist from Red Hot Chili Peppers and the guy who produced OK Computer, well, you’re kind of asking for the “super” tag. In fairness to Thom, the Atoms’ debut Amok isn’t so much a supergroup record as a Thom Yorke solo album with help from some other guys you’ve heard of. Forming a logical bridge between his laptop project The Eraser and Radiohead’s latest King Of Limbs, Amok aggregates Yorke’s fondness for skittering beats, wiry melodies, and other-worldly synths. It also boasts some of his strongest songs in years, notably the lead single “Default” and the swelling “Unless.” Amok, however, is primarily about texture, and that’s where the other Atoms come in. Producer Nigel Goodrich ably adds depth and intricacy to the mix, while Flea anchors the whole affair with his surprisingly rudimentary baselines. While Amok may not have anyone forgetting about Radiohead
★★★ ½ (out of 5 stars)
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