Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood slams “idiot” climate change critics who label bands “hypocrites” for using air travel

The guitarist also spoke on his band's "legacy" in campaigning

Radiohead‘s Jonny Greenwood has spoken out against the criticism being levelled at climate change activists and musicians in a new interview.

The Oxford band, who have supported Greenpeace since the early ’00s, released 18 hours of previously unheard ‘OK Computer’ material in aid of Extinction Rebellion over the summer. The environmental activist group offered their thanks to Radiohead for their efforts following the release.

Speaking to The Guardian, Radiohead’s guitarist and keyboardist Greenwood said that he’s reluctant to see the band as a climate change standard-bearer. “Are you saying our legacy will be, ‘We warned you it was going to be terrible, and now it is?’ Wow. Good times.”


Greenwood went on to talk about how bands and those who need to use air travel for work are deemed hypocrites for contributing to the problem. He reasoned that this view serves as a distraction from a bigger picture.

Jonny Greenwood performing live (Picture: Andrew Benge/Redferns)

“Yes, this person is a hypocrite because they flew,” Greenwood said. “But if picking holes in someone’s green credentials is all you need to convince yourself there’s no climate change problem then you’re kind of an idiot.”

These comments come after Tory MP David Davies attacked The 1975 for flying around the world on tour, a practise he argued was at odds with their vocal support of Extinction Rebellion.

Earlier this week, Declan McKenna played an outdoor London show as part of a wave of protests for the cause.


In other news, Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood recently launched his own record label. Octatonic Records is an imprint of Council Records and will focus on new classical music from selected musicians around the world, as well as some of Greenwood’s own compositions.

Thom Yorke, meanwhile, performed Radiohead’s ‘Like Spinning Plates’ live solo for the first time in 9 years last weekend.