Thom Yorke issues surprise album, Tomorrow's Modern Boxes, via BitTorrent

Thom Yorke
Thom Yorke (Image credit: Josh Withers/Corbis)

No, it's not free, nor is it loaded right onto your iTunes, but the second solo album from Thom Yorke is still something of a surprise.

The Radiohead/Atoms For Peace singer announced today in joint statement with producer Nigel Godrich, that the eight-song record, Tomorrow's Modern Boxes, is now available via BitTorrent in what is called the "first ever paygated torrent in history."

The statement in full:

As an experiment we are using a new version of BitTorrent to distribute a new Thom Yorke record.
The new Torrent files have a pay gate to access a bundle of files.
The files can be anything, but in this case is an 'album'.
It's an experiment to see if the mechanics of the system are something that the general public can get its head around ...
If it works well it could be an effective way of handing some control of internet commerce back to people who are creating the work.
Enabling those people who make either music, video or any other kind of digital content to sell it themselves.
Bypassing the self elected gate-keepers.
If it works anyone can do this exactly as we have done.
The torrent mechanism does not require any server uploading or hosting costs or 'cloud' malarkey.
It's a self-contained embeddable shop front...
The network not only carries the traffic, it also hosts the file. The file is in the network.
Oh yes and it's called Tomorrow's Modern Boxes.

The tracklist for the album is as follows:

1. Brain In A Bottle
2. Guess Again!
3. Interference
4. The Mother Lode
5. Truth Ray
6. There Is No Ice (For My Drink)
7. Pink Section
8. Nose Grows Some

The album can be downloaded as a bundle, which includes a video for Brain In A Bottle, at BitTorrent for $6 US (or £3.68 GBP).

Joe Bosso

Joe is a freelance journalist who has, over the past few decades, interviewed hundreds of guitarists for Guitar WorldGuitar PlayerMusicRadar and Classic Rock. He is also a former editor of Guitar World, contributing writer for Guitar Aficionado and VP of A&R for Island Records. He’s an enthusiastic guitarist, but he’s nowhere near the likes of the people he interviews. Surprisingly, his skills are more suited to the drums. If you need a drummer for your Beatles tribute band, look him up.