Fans react to The Smile’s Glastonbury debut: “Thom Yorke unleashing his inner demented punk”


The Smile, the new band comprised of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood and Sons Of Kemet’s Tom Skinner, gave their debut live performance tonight (May 22).

The new group played as part of Glastonbury’s Live At Worthy Farm livestream event, which was filmed at various spots across the iconic festival site.

The Smile’s involvement was only announced hours before the livestream began, while the set offered fans the first chance to hear music by the new project, which Yorke dubbed “a collaboration with Nigel Godrich”.


Yorke said little during the performance but did offer an explanation of the band’s name, which was inspired by a Ted Hughes poem. “Ladies and gentlemen, we are called The Smile,” he said at one point.

“Not The Smile as in ‘aaah!’, more the smile of the guy who lies to you every day.”

During and after the band’s performance, fans took to Twitter to share their reactions to the set and songs. “Fantastic, but The Smile just sound like a pared back Radiohead???” One Twitter user wrote. Later, after more songs had been aired, they added: “Un-fucking-real. Yorke unleashing his inner demented punk. Love it.”

“I see Thom Yorke and The Smile keeping a nice party atmosphere,” another wrote.


“OK I am in LOVE with The Smile,” someone else added. “Love the vibe, love the songs, vocals, LOVE THE THOM BASS. All amazing.”

See more reactions below now.

Before the livestream kicked off, organiser Emily Eavis said the Glastonbury team were “truly honoured that Thom and Jonny have chosen our livestream event to premiere their brand new project”.

The Live At Worthy Farm livestream faced technical difficulties this evening, with thousands of fans unable to enter the stream with their access codes. Eavis later apologised for the issues and promised the full concert would be re-shown tomorrow (May 23).

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