Radiohead talk recording ‘OK Computer’ in a haunted house

Thom Yorke describes hearing voices telling him to cut his hair

Radiohead have recalled working on their classic album ‘OK Computer’ in a haunted house, speaking in a new interview to mark the 20th anniversary of their seminal record.

The band recently announced the 20th anniversary reissue of their classic album ‘OK Computer’, which will arrive on June 23. Originally released in 1997, ‘OK Computer’ was largely recorded at St Catherine’s Court in Bath between 1996 and early 1997.

Speaking of the Somerset manor house where the likes of The Cure and New Order have also recorded, guitarist Jonny Greenwood has told Rolling Stone that “people were always hearing sounds” in the house.

Frontman Thom Yorke added: “Ghosts would talk to me while I was asleep. There was one point where I got up in the morning after a night of hearing voices and decided I had to cut my hair.” The singer described how he proceeded to attempt to cut his hair with “the little scissors on a penknife” and “cut myself a few times. It got messy. I came downstairs and everyone was like, ‘Uh, are you all right?’ I was like, ‘What’s wrong?’ Phil very gently took me downstairs and shaved it all off.”

Elaborating on his psyche during the making of ‘OK Computer’, Yorke said: “I was basically catatonic. The claustrophobia – just having no sense of reality at all… I was getting into the sense of information overload, which is ironic, really, since it’s so much worse now.”

“The paranoia I felt at the time was much more related to how people related to each other,” he added. “But I was using the terminology of technology to express it. Everything I was writing was actually a way of trying to reconnect with other human beings when you’re always in transit. That’s what I had to write about because that’s what was going on, which in itself instilled a kind of loneliness and disconnection.”

“Back then,” Yorke recalled, “the person I saw in the mirror kept saying, ‘You’re shit. Everything you do is shit. Don’t do that. It’s shit.’ ”

Elsewhere in the interview, Radiohead hit out at Britpop, with Jonny Greenwood describing the genre as “just a 1960s revival” and Yorke saying it “made me fucking angry”.

Meanwhile, it has been announced that Jonny Greenwood will open for his own band during Radiohead’s European tour.

Greenwood’s side project Junun, which features the guitarist along with Shye Ben Tzur, and the Rajasthan Express, will support Radiohead for their forthcoming dates in Oslo, Stockholm, Florence, Dublin, Manchester, and Tel Aviv in June and July. They will also play a handful of their own shows during the tour.

Radiohead are due to headline Glastonbury on June 23.