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Atoms For Peace, New Album “Amok”

To the uninitiated, it is easy to mistake the hypnotic bodily vibrations of Thom Yorke for the spiritual dance of a nouveau réligion. As prophetic as the Radiohead front man’s moves may seem in both the music videos for Lotus Flower and now supergroup Atom For Peace’s Ingenue, the intense hip thrusts and flailing arms strangely speak to the soul in an unfathomably profound manner.

As the performance demonstrates, much of Atoms for Peace’s oeuvre seems to revolve around Yorke’s fascinating musical experiments and could be written off as another one of his side projects. However, the band’s newest album Amok is testament to the splendor of minimalist, visceral sounds that result from the combination of its members, including Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Joey Waronker of R.E.M. Amok is an Afrobeat-inspired exercise in form. It coasts the viewer along with Yorke’s vocals that stretches over the pulsating synth lines, bass parts and drum beats experienced in Before Your Very Eyes… or Dropped. Flea’s part in the music is more subtle and relaxed than his usual style and brings the album its immersive quality. The album hooks you in with the charismatic tones of its first single Default and holds you singing words you don’t know, anchoring listeners down with Stuck Together Piece’s appropriate refrain: ‘you don’t get away so easily…’ It dances before us, and we are transfixed.

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