Radiohead's are hyping up their OKNOTOK release with a new song called 'I Promise,' which will feature on the album. OKNOTOK is a celebration of the band's legendary record OK Computer, which turns 20 this year.
'I Promise' is a song that comes from the OK Computer sessions (even being performed a few times in 1996), and this recording comes straight from those times. The song falls in between the lines of OK Computer tracks 'No Surprises' and 'The Tourist,' its acoustic-driven chords and marching drums moving the song forward as Thom Yorke's faraway vocals quietly chant "I promise" over and over again after each situation he describes, the song promising that no matter what he goes through, he will stay true to his word. The song gently builds in the end, Yorke's vocals becoming more and more emotional as the song progresses, orchestras brightly building up as the song comes to a conclusion. What's interesting about the build is that the parts that exist don't change, it is only more additions to the song that give the song a larger sound.
The music video released for the song is weird in the Radiohead way. It centers around a bodiless man with wires coming out of his neck riding the bus, watching the scenes and people go by. His discontentment soon passes as he witnesses a variety of scenes that range from mysterious to religious, the video ending with him smiling, as if he's happy to have lived through the experiences he has and not having regrets.
Radiohead always pushes the boundaries, but even when they release a "safer" song such as 'I Promise,' there's still a lot of depth to it. Their artistic footprint makes a big imprint every time it makes a step. OKNOTOK is due out on June 23.
Rating: 88 / 100
Buy or listen to 'I Promise' on Amazon: