Thom Yorke plays new Radiohead song Silent Spring at UN Climate Change conference (VIDEO).

Thom Yorke Debuted Two Haunting New Songs at a Climate Change Concert in Paris

Thom Yorke Debuted Two Haunting New Songs at a Climate Change Concert in Paris

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
Dec. 5 2015 12:58 PM

Thom Yorke Debuted Two Haunting New Songs at a Climate Change Concert in Paris

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Thom Yorke performs on the stage of the Trianon on December 4, 2015, during the Pathway to Paris concert series. FP/Getty Images)

Photo by MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/Getty Images

Thom Yorke has been especially vocal of late on the topic of climate change. He recently discussed the issue with writer George Monbiot for Télérama, did the same with writer Naomi Klein on French TV, and on Friday joined artists like Patti Smith and Flea in performing for Pathway to Paris, a concert held in conjunction with the critical UN climate change talks currently underway in France.

After playing some old material, Yorke debuted two sparse, eerily beautiful new songs. One, reportedly titled “Silent Spring”—a sly nod to Rachel Carson’s famed environmental study—seems to be a Radiohead number, with the singer noting that “this is Jonny’s bit” midway through. If that’s true, the song’s raw, rousing lyrics would make it one of the band’s most baldly political tunes yet.   

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The second song, “Desert Island Disk,” features a similar sound and theme, though Yorke was more coy about whether it was a one-off tune, a solo single, or another possible Radiohead track.  

Sharan Shetty is on the editorial staff of the New Yorker. You can follow him on Twitter