Subscribe to our newsletter

Credit: Alex Lake

Music

The Smile drop brand new single 'The Smoke'

@TylerGolsen
The Smile - 'The Smoke'
8.5

England’s hottest new supergroup, The Smile, have returned with their second official single, ‘The Smoke’.

Coming hot off the heels of their first release, ‘You Will Never Work in Television Again’, the group containing two Radiohead members and one Son of Kemet has decided to slow things down for their second song, incorporating more of the jazz-adjacent sound that drummer Tom Skinner usually explores in his day job.

Featuring a funky drum loop, some nifty bass work, and signature airy vocals from Thom Yorke, ‘The Smoke’ is a complete about-face from the frantic guitar-heavy drive of ‘You Will Never Work in Television Again’. The entire first minute is just a bass and drums jam, and even as the song continues to build up into a fuller arrangement, there’s always a strong amount of space for all of the instruments to breathe.

For anyone who might have been a bit thrown by the fact that Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood haven’t done anything this explicitly rock-adjacent in years, ‘The Smoke’ is a return to the more ambient and heady sounds that we’ve come to know and love from the two. But even still, ‘The Smoke’ isn’t nearly as experimental as the material from either Radiohead or Sons of Kemet, signalling that The Smile may well and truly just be a bit of fun to give all involved a little bit of mindless release.

The new track comes as The Smile are preparing for their global livestream this weekend, which will see the trio play three separate performances over the course of fewer than 24 hours. It’s an ambitious plan, and the band members are unlikely to get much sleep this weekend, but it’s worth it to get live performances out to the UK, US, Japan, and Australia all at the same time.

Check out the audio for ‘The Smoke’ down below.