The Smile

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Taking their moniker from the title of a poem by English poet Ted Hughes, the Smile is a collaborative project featuring the talents of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood, Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinner, and longtime Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich. Born of the early doldrums of the COVID-19 pandemic, the band made their surprise live debut in 2021 at Glastonbury and subsequently announced that a record was forthcoming. In January 2022, they released the first taste of the album, a knotty, guitar-driven rush of motorik post-punk titled “You Will Never Work in Television Again.” The trio issued half a dozen singles to prime fans for the eventual full-length release A Light for Attracting Attention. Arriving that May, the U.K.- and Billboard-charting set blended the skittering anxiety and haunted beauty of Radiohead with Skinner’s jazzy execution. A concert EP, The Smile (Live at Montreux Jazz Festival, July 2022), arrived later that year. ~ James Christopher Monger