Radiohead to start Australian tour with throat trouble?
Radiohead kicked off their much-anticipated antipodean tour last night with a sole New Zealand show at Auckland's Vector Arena. And the report from the night is sure to send shudders through local ticketholders.
According to the New Zealand Herald, frontman Thom Yorke suffered from throat issues throughout the gig, reporting that his voice "sounding a little rough by the end on which he blamed jetlag."
Fans were more descriptive after the show. "Thom's speaking voice sounded really hoarse," wrote one commenter on fan site ateaseweb.com. "His singing was still amazing though." Another concurred. "Throat trouble for sure. Thom struggled at points in the show, using throat spray and mentioning jet lag and [a] sore throat. He looked quite ragged when he left the stage. Hats off to him for battling through." Two songs—'15 Step' and 'Everything In It's Right Place'—were omitted from the set according to ateaseweb, "most likely due to some voice trouble."
Such mentions raise the ugly spectre of Radiohead's aborted 2004 Australian tour on the back of Hail to the Thief, which saw a show cancelled in Melbourne thanks to—yes—throat issues. The band haven't toured here since.
Despite the problem, fans were otherwise effusive about the show. "Personally I found the whole experience incredible," wrote one on the Herald. "Many other prolific gig-goers I talked to rated this in their top 3 gigs of all time. Thom Yorke's voice was angelic, the lights and visuals were the most inventive I've seen and the band were electric."
The band start their Australian tour this Friday in Brisbane. While you wait, why not buy their demo cassettes for 50 thousand dollars?
Watch a snippet of the band playing a (yes, slightly vocally shaky) 'There There' and 'The National Anthem' in New Zealand last night below: