In order to put that special Radiohead album release twist on their latest effort, The King Of Limbs, the avant-rock explorers are giving away a free newspaper entitled 'The Universal Sigh' to correspond with its physical release. The surprise digital release of The King of Limbs last month confounded many fans as it ditched the pay-what-you-like formula that had worked so well for their prior album, In Rainbows.
Hailed by the band as the first 'newspaper album,' the digital release was decidedly unnewspaper-like save maybe for its short running-time, which allowed The King of Limbs to potentially be consumed along with breakfast. 'The Universal Sigh' is a cleverly formatted collection of stories, poems, lyrics, and pictures with contributions from acclaimed writers Robert MacFarlane and Jay Griffiths. The articles are full of isolation and solitude, and do a pretty good job of reflecting the album's frozen landscape.
Fans all around the world lined up to grab a free copy of the paper. Thom Yorke personally handed out copies to a crowd yesterday at Rough Trade East in London (CDs come out a day earlier in the UK). Today fans in Los Angeles stood in line several times to get their hands on multiple copies. On May 9, Radiohead will release the "newspaper edition" of the album, with fancy packaging and the whole shebang.