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Thom Yorke: No more Radiohead albums. The Radiohead frontman says his band have no intention to release another album and will instead focus on download-only singles and EPs

Radiohead’s Thom Yorke … ‘I can’t bear the idea of doing an album again’. Photograph: Lucy Nicholson/ Reuters

Radiohead have no plans to release another album, Thom Yorke has revealed. Long-playing records, it seems, have “just become a real drag”.

Yorke’s comments emerge just days after his band released a download-only single, in tribute to first world war veteran Harry Patch. This model of instantly available singles and quick EPs is the way that Radiohead now wish to proceed, Yorke told the Believer magazine.

“None of us want to go into that creative hoo-ha of a long-play record again,” he said. “Not straight off … It worked with In Rainbows because we had a real fixed idea about where we were going. But we’ve all said that we can’t possibly dive into that again. It’ll kill us.”

The problem isn’t the format – “obviously, there’s still something great about the album,” Yorke said – but with the scale and consistency of vision that is required. “In Rainbows was a particular aesthetic and I can’t bear the idea of doing that again. Not that it’s not good, I just can’t … bear … that.”

Yorke is already considering recording an EP of orchestral works. “[Radiohead member] Jonny [Greenwood] and I have talked about sitting down and writing songs for orchestra … and then doing a live take of it and that’s it – finished.” Previously, Radiohead’s album-lead focus made Yorke reluctant to undertake projects like this. “You think, ‘Do you want to do a whole record like that? Or do you just want to get stuck into it for a bit and see how it feels?’”

The switch to short-form releases will be a change for Radiohead, who have long been one of the most steadfast advocates of the album format. Previously, the band’s downloads were only available as complete albums. This approach initially made them spurn the industry-leading iTunes Music Store service, which insists on selling albums as individual tracks.

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