ok computer lyrics

Monday, August 21, 2006

07 fitter happier

More productive
Not drinking too much
Regular exercise at the gym (3 days a week)
Getting on better with your associate employee contemporaries
At ease
Eating well (no more microwave dinners and saturated fats)
A patient better driver
A safer car (baby smiling in back seat)
Sleeping well (no bad dreams)
No paranoia
Careful to all animals (never washing spiders down the plughole)
Keep in contact with old friends (enjoy a drink now and then)
Will frequently check credit at (moral) bank (hole in wall)
Favors for favors
Fond but not in love
Charity standing orders
On sundays ring road supermarket
(No killing moths or putting boiling water on the ants)
Car wash (also on sundays)
No longer afraid of the dark
Or midday shadows
Nothing so ridiculously teenage and desperate
Nothing so childish
At a better pace
Slower and more calculated
No chance of escape
Now self-employed
Concerned (but powerless)
An empowered and informed member of society (pragmatism not idealism)
Will not cry in public
Less hance of illness
Tires that grip in the wet (shot of baby strapped in back seat)
A good memory
Still cries at a good film
Still kisses with saliva
No longer empty and frantic
Like a cat
Tied to a stick
That's driven into frozen winter shit (the ability to laugh at weakness)
Fitter, healthier and more productive
A pig
In a cage
On antibiotics

available on: ok computer

I was having real trouble writing anything. But I was walking around a lot, endlessly walking around each day. One particularly bad day I wrote this list. I set down items like a shopping list, and it turned into this thing. I showed the words to everybody, and everyone thought it was really good.
--Thom Yorke (Exit Music: The Radiohead Story by Mac Randall)

Q: "The artwork on the LP and some of the T-shirts on sale - they seem, to have quite a coherent set of concerns, ones that stem from 'Fitter Happier'. Was that an accident?"

Thom: "We actively chose to pursue the 'Fitter Happier' thing. The one that says 'Meeting People Is Easy', I like a lot. In that picture [the only bit of artwork reproduced on the CD itself], one guy's got a briefcase, one guy hasn't. Someone's being sold something they don't really want, and someone's being friendly because they're trying to sell something. That's what it means to me. It's quite sad, and quite funny as well."

Q: "It often seems that you're puzzling over a society in which people need outside advice about very primal things - how to remain healthy, how to interact with each other..."

All the artwork and so on... we chose to pursue it after we did the track. More relevant is the reason I wrote the words in the first place. [pause] These were things I was being told to do. I showed it to the others and they liked it, and then Stanley - who does the artwork - was playing around on the computer and made it say it.
After that, it went from being a list of things that had a lot of emotional meaning for me and that was it, to coming to life. In fact, it was all the things that I hadn't said in the songs. Stanley was really just pushing into it, and I was as well in the end. It was like, 'I'm not going to hide this thing that I wrote, 'cause I'm really proud of it.
--Thom, Select (December 1997)

notes: Jonny Greenwood: "this was the original text which we already put on our internet-site a year ago. We put all kinds of things on it. Things we like, things which we don't know what to do with it them. One day, Thom was playing with his new computer and he found out he could let the machine talk. When he programmed the text from Fitter, Happier, it sounded very beautiful on a sort of alarming tone. It was something weird. It wasn't melodramatic, but it wasn't cold either. The music is a combination of a piano through a memo-recorder and a 24 headed string-orchestra, who played something i wrote two days before."

Thom Yorke: "the most escapist moment of OK Computer is in Fitter Happier. We put the lyrics in the computer with a talk-program. Just standard software. The text is now spoken by an emotionless computervoice. I see it as the ultimate dissociation with the lyrics and your responsibilty for it. See it as something between a statement and an experiment."

Thom (again):"I'm not standing behind the lyrics anymore. Sometimes your ideas get entangled with other ideas, and then you have to apologize for the original idea because it doesn't make sense anymore.That's what happened with 'Fitter Happier'. Now, I listen to the piano part."
fitter, happier more productive

* comfortable
* not drinking too much
* regular exercise at the gym (3days a week)
* getting on better with your associate employee contemporaries
* at ease
* eating well (no more microwave dinners and saturated fats)
* a patient better driver
* a safer car (baby smiling in back seat)
* sleeping well (no bad dreams)
* no paranoia
* careful to all animals (never washing spiders down the plughole)
* keep in contact with old friends (enjoy a drink now and then)
* will frequently check credit at (moral) bank (hole in wall)
* favours for favours
* fond but not in love (girlfriends and wives)
* charity stanbding orders
* on sundays ring road supermarket
* (no killing moths or putting boiling water on the ants)
* car wash (also on sundays)
* no longer afraid of the dark
* or midday shadows
* nothing so ridiculoiusly teenage and desperate
* nothing so childish
* at a better pace
* slower and more calculated
* no chance of escape
* now self-employed (his own man is_)
* concerned (but powerless)
* an empowered & informed member of society (pragmatism not idealism)
* will not cry in public
* girlfriends and wives
* less chance of illness
* tyres that grip in the wet (shot of baby strapped in back seat)
* clean shaven
* a good memory
* still cries at a good film
* still kisses with saliva
* no longer empty and frantic
* like a cat
* tied to a stick
* that's driven into
* frozen winter shit (the ability to laugh at weakness)
* calm
* fitter, healthier and more productive
* a pig
* in a cage
* on antibiotics

06 karma police

Karma police
Arrest this man
He talks in maths
He buzzes like a fridge
He's like a detuned radio
Karma police
Arrest this girl
Her hitler hairdo
Is making me feel ill
And we have crashed her party

This is what you get
This is what you get
This is what you get
When you mess with us

Karma police
I've given all I can
It's not enough
I've given all i can
But we're still on the payroll

This is what you get
This is what you get
This is what you get
When you mess with us

For a minute there
I lost myself
I lost myself
Phew, for a minute there
I lost myself
I lost myself
I lost myself
I lost myself
I lost myself
I lost myself

available on: ok computer & karma police

Because of the word karma a lot of people think automatically about John Lennon, but to me it's more like Perfect Day by Lou Reed in a musical point of view. Karma Police is something from our last tour. When someone misbehaved we always said: the karma police is going to get him or her in the end.
--Jonny Greenwood

Karma Police is just a joke. It's the only funny song on the album. A sentence like "Karma Police, arrest this man" actually belongs in a textballoon for a comic strip.
--Thom Yorke

When someone in the band behaved like an asshole, one of the others always said: "The Karma Police is gonna get you". I suppose it's all rubbish that your destiny depends on your deeds in a previous life, but you have to trust on something.
--Ed O'Brien

05 let down

Motorways and tram lines
Starting and then stopping
Taking off and landing
The emptiest of feelings
Disappointed people
Clinging onto bottles
And when it comes its so so disappointing

Let down and hanging around
Crushed like a bug in the ground
Let down and hanging around

Shell smashed
Juices flowing
Wings twitch legs are going
Don't get sentimental
It always ends up drivel
One day I'm going to grow wings
A chemical reaction
Hysterical and useless
Hysterical and

Let down and hanging around
Crushed like a bug in the ground
Let down and hanging around

You know where you are with
You know where you are with
Floor collapses
Bouncing back and one day I am gonna grow wings
A chemical reaction
Hysterical and useless
Hysterical and

Let down and hanging around
Crushed like a bug in the ground
Let down and hanging around
LET DOWN (4:59)
available on: ok computer & let down

Let Down is about what speed and movement do to someone's mind. You know what I mean when your staring out of a window in a moving train for an hour. All those people, cars and houses passing by. The melody intensifies the idea of losing yourself. I find it a nice kind of boredom, where I find my peace and in my subconscious new ideas come up.
--Jonny Greenwood

It's about the lack of control. You feel more sad than angry. But why Thom sings 'crushed like a bug in the ground', I don't know. "I hope I'm not sort of blowing our own trumpet, but I think Thom is probably the finest lyricist in the UK of his generation at the moment and hes always trying to progress, as we as musicians try to do ourselves. Theres this nice relationship between the lyrics and the music.
--Ed O'Brien

04 exit music (for a film)

From your sleep
The drying of your tears
Today we escape
We escape
And get dressed
Before your father hears us
Before all hell breaks loose
Breathe, keep breathing
Don't lose your nerve
Breathe, keep breathing
I can't do this alone
Sing us a song, a song to keep us warm
There's such a chill, such a chill

And You can laugh
A spineless laugh
We hope your rules and wisdom choke you
And now we are one
In everlasting peace
We hope that you choke, that you choke
We hope that you choke, that you choke
We hope that you choke, that you choke

available on: ok computer
covered by brad mehldau

We got the request to make song that would be played during the final credits of the film Romeo & Juliet. They sent us parts of the - unfinished - movie and it was a creative challenge to make the music for it.
--Jonny Greenwood

The director of R&J thought that TSH was the perfect counter-weight for the surrealistic narrators in the movie. He is probably right. There's a Romeo part in me. I am just as crazy as he is. When I am in love, it's all or nothing. Time after time I end up banging my head against the wall, but do you think that this sentimental fool will ever learn? No!
--Thom Yorke

If this song feels like a parting gesture, then that's because it was conceived that way--as the playout music for Baz Luhrmann's 1996 film version of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. But it was more, much more than that. For while a second contribution, 'Talk Show Host', appears on the film's soundtrack CD, the band declined to give permission for the producers to use 'Exit Music', claiming the song was "too personal". And, unlike 'Talk Show Host', which had already appeared on the B-side of the 'Street Spirit' single, 'Exit Music' had yet to form part of the official Radiohead canon.

03 subterranean homesick alien

The breath of the morning
I keep forgetting
The smell of the warm summer air
I live in a town where you can't smell a thing
You watch your feet for cracks in the pavement
And up above aliens hover making home movies for the folks back home
Of all these weird creatures who lock up their spirits
Drill holes in themselves and live for their secrets

They're all uptight

I wish that they'd swoop down in a country lane
Late at night when I'm driving
Take me onboard that beautiful ship
Show me the worlds I'd love to see
I'd tell all my friends but they never believe me
They'd think that I've finally lost it completely
I show them the stars and the meaning of life, they'd shut me away but I'd be all right all right
I'm just uptight

available on: ok computer

available on: rare on the air 4

notes: Jonny Greenwood: "the intro and the chorus is mine, the rest is thom's work" Jonny says, "we were trying to sound like [Miles Davis's] Bitches Brew. We kind of fell in love with electric pianos and echoey drum kits. We were trying to do that, but between me and Thom, we don't have any good electric piano players. And we didn't like the guitar playing. And none of us can play trumpet, so it was always going to be fairly bad plagiarising." (http://ateaseweb.com/songs/subterraneanhomesickalien.php)

02 paranoid android

Please could you stop the noise, I'm trying to get some rest
From all the unborn chicken voices in my head
What's that?
What's that?
When I am king you will be first against the wall
With your opinion which is of no consequence at all
What's that?
What's that?
Ambition makes you look pretty ugly
Kicking and squealing gucci little piggy
You don't remember
You don't remember
Why don't you remember my name?
Off with his head, man
Off with his head, man
Why don't you remember my name?
I guess he does
Rain down
Rain down
Come on rain down
On me
From a great height
From a great height
That's it sir (Rain down)
You're leaving
The crackle of pig skin (Rain down)
The dust and the screaming (Come on rain down on me)
The yuppies networking
The panic, the vomit (from a great height)
The panic, the vomit (from a great height)
God loves his children
God loves his children, yeah
Jonny: "paranoid android is a minature-version of ok computer. It was the first song i put on a tape for friends to listen after recording the album, because it's a good introduction for the rest of the album. Paranoid Android should make you curious for the rest of the album". Colin: "On Paranoid Android what we were into was the idea of a DJ Shadow meets The Beatles thing. It wasn't about constructing a classical rock edifice like Bohemian Rhapsody. It was more about taking things apart and sticking them together again to see if they made any sense, in the same way that DJ Shadow does and in the same way that The Beatles did on stuff like I Am The Walrus. Nigel Godrich, our engineer, just spliced the different sections together and it was all luck."

Thom: "it really started out as three separate songs and we didn't know what to do with them. Then we thought of 'Happiness [is a warm gun]' - which was obviously three different bits that John Lennon put together - and said 'Why don't we try that?'"

After being asked if the song was about the Fall of the Roman Empire, Thom adopted his explanation, but other band members have likened the lyrics of the track to those of 'the bends'. On one level the lyrics are absurd; on another, they're quite serious. During the band's 1996 live sets, when they were opening for Alanis Morissette, the song ended with a very long hammond solo courtesy of Jonny, drawing it out to the eleven-minute mark.

Paranoid Android, the first single from 'Ok Computer' was a complicated affair, not least because of the three disparate yet cohesive sections. It had been inspired by a bad experience Thom had one night in a Los Angeles bar. He had gone there for a quiet drink, but found himself surrounded by parasitic groupie types and pretentious California posers. Unbeknown to him, virtually everyone in the room, except himself, was on cocaine. Thom: "The people I saw that night were just like demons from another planet. Everyone was trying to get something out of me. I felt like my own self was collapsing in the presence of it, but I also felt completely, utterly part of it, like it was all going to some crashing down any minute.' The band had been playing the song for months in rehearsals, but that night, while he couldn't sleep, the lyrics flooded into Thom's head at 5am. Of particular horror to him was one especially vicious lady who had a drink spilt over her dress and whose face contorted in venom at the culprit - she was the 'kicking, squealing Gucci little piggy' that Thom sang of and he was horrified. Thom: "Basically it's just abou chaos, chaos, utter fucking chaos."

in a bar in hollywood* the centre of the western universe, standing at the bar (social drinking) after doing the talk show bit. do you want to know this? this is what we aspire to is it? it is dark, there is a woman opposite me who is as sociably anorexic as her poodle, she looks desolate in her make up and lost eyes, next to her her husband boyfriend is persuading a younger fleshed half his age stewardess to come back to the hills to their mansion to sample his wine. she looks at him like he's a character in a hammer house horror. one of our friends spills a glass of wine over a vacuum packed gucci outfit complete with matching white hand bag. the witch goes crazy, we think it is fuunny. until we see the evil in her eyes. my friend is asked to leave. the gucci creature is the closest thing i have seen to the devil. the woman is possessed. i cannot sleep that night asking what we've got our selves into. voices talking like fax machines, hissing and spitting like demons, this is the master race. and now im part of it. anyway you didnt want to know that. (http://www.radiohead.com/Archive/Site1/gallery2.html)

01 airbag

In the next world war
A jackknifed juggernaut
I am born again
In the neon sign
Scrolling up and down
I am born again

In an interstellar burst
I am back to save the universe

In a deep deep sleep
Of the innocent
I am born again
In a fast German car
I'm amazed that I survived
An airbag saved my life

In an interstellar burst
I am back to save the universe

In an interstellar burst
I am back to save the universe

In an interstellar burst
I am back to save the universe

an airbag saved my life* in an interstella burst i am back to save the universe computer drums bass wrong lift* is hard work you been stuck in a lift we been trying to reach you thom the belly of the whale (thanks Rei xxxx) paranoid android* get busy with the shakers while im fast asleep could you stop the noise im trying ta get some rest this the place it wont hurt ever again karma police* girl with hitler hairdo everybodys friend life in a glasshouse phew for a minute there i lost myself i lost myself sit down your safe now polyethelene*will never break down swirly self announcements. stuck in a frozen lake. the penultimate place in dante's hell. last flowers till the hospital*is a sign discovered in oxford -my unhealthy obsession with these institutions. analysts may get the connection. ambulances scream past my house at all hours of the day and night like the confessionals of Larkin's "Ambulan s." let down*in the midst of monster tour the momentum getting drunk to talk bombarded by dangerously high levels of radiation from xray machines. one day, one day... climbing up the walls*both managers and record company are nervous about such a nasty sound coming out of the speakers. this is a good sign. dogwander* bring on another take better than another cake. nude* it is a mans world. and this one is very confused and will have sex with anything woman who comes within a mile radius. but feels bad about it. so doesnt. exit song (for a film)* cannot be listened to more than once in a row. which made recording it easy. or not. but what film? big boots* it was a long time ago and i cant remember. a whole orchestra watching the film and playing along. real life is dull. i am i the white lotus flying off the quay with barbara bach.
(information incomplete)
....>>>>i like the idea of you listening to our recordings with your head resting gently in emptiness. or before going out. or when you've come back. i dont like the scientists breaking down its molecular structure and teaching it in O level chemistry i ont want to have expain it but it worries me stupid. there is a lot of crying goes into making things.<<<<.... the masters tell us that there is an aspect of our minds that is its fundamental basis, a state called "the ground of the ordinary mind." It functions like a storehouse, in which the imprints of past actions caused by our negative emotions are all store like seeds. when the right conditions arise, they germinate and manifest as circumstances and situations in our lives. if we have a habit of thinking in a particular pattern, positive or negative, then these tendencies will be triggered and provoked very easily and recurr and go on recurring. With constant repetition our inclinations and habits become steadily more entr ched and continue, increasing and gathering power even when we sleep. This is how they come to determine our life, our death our rebirth. (http://www.radiohead.com/Archive/Site1/gallery.html)