Radiohead – No Surprises (Track Of The Day, 4th May)

UK legends Radiohead yesterday announced the thrilling news that they would be re-releasing their OK Computer album, celebrating 20 years since its 1997 release.

The re-release, entitled OKNOTOK, will not only include the original twelve tracks of OK Computer, but also include three unreleased tracks and eight B-sides, all newly remastered from original analogue tapes. More details of the release that’s planned for 23rd June can be sourced from

In the meantime, we are riding the Radiohead train and celebrating the good news by having OK Computer‘s “No Surprises” as our Track Of The Day.

“A heart that’s full up like a landfill
A job that slowly kills you
Bruises that won’t heal”

“No Surprises” is a sweetly melodic rock track which seems to speak about modern life, specifically what it seems that people are seeking. The well-paying job, the picket fenced house, the serenity of going through these motions. Only to live in such circumstances, with all that is predictable and mundane (wanting ‘no alarms and no surprises’), it can be seen and understood as being a slow march toward death. The entire song feels like an ironic celebration of monotony.

The sweetness of the chimed melody is heart-tearing as sombre vocals are sung heavily along with them. The statements of what is being chosen (“I’ll take the quiet life..”), while sung so unexpressively, feel like a weak fight for righteousness in the face of drowning in mundanity.

The music video echoes this by literally having Thom Yorke having water fill up the space around him while he sings unexpressively, letting himself be submerged (for an uncomfortable period of time). Only at the bridge is there finally a shift and some signs of life and wanting to be free from nothingness, also singing “Let me out of here” with the final chorus.

Check out “No Surprises” with its music video or stream via Spotify.

Kel Burch

Creator and caretaker of Depth Mag, Kel uses her superpowers of empathy, word-weaving, and feeling everything deeply, to immerse herself in music before returning to reality to write about her experience with it. [Loved the read? Shout Kel a latte.]

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