In May I spent almost every day in the lab, and by the end of it I was absolutely exhausted. I’ve been doing experiments that needed checking every day, plus I have a deadline looming in August so I’m trying to make that happen! (I’m enjoying the summer, though, it’s great actually spending all my time in the lab instead of going to classes and spending hours on homework. So don’t feel too sorry for me)

Anyway, on the 29th of May I was doing a spot of blog-reading in the morning before I headed into the lab. I looked at Stanley Donwood’s blog – he is the artist who has done all of Radiohead’s cover artwork and merchandise, and I like his stuff a lot (I’m thinking about purchasing a piece of his work, but I will have to save up for a really long time…). I hadn’t looked at his blog for a while, but there was a post showing one of his t-shirt designs for a Radiohead tour date (I hope it’s OK that I repost this here):

The larch.

I have spent a few jetlagged hours drawing some larch trees to form the background for the tshirt designs for the next leg of the Radiohead tour. For reasons which now escape me, I decided to do a different tshirt for each date on the tour. Anyway, this is the design for the first date on this part of the tour.
The larch is a strange tree; a conifer that is deciduous. Its needles fall in the autumn, while all the other conifers stay green all through the winter.

– 6th May 2012

My heart seriously stopped for a second – I was sure that Radiohead hadn’t had a tour date scheduled for Massachusetts, but I guess they must have added more dates since the last time I’d checked. And this Massachusetts concert was on the 29th of May… today.

For those of you who don’t know me well, you should know that Radiohead is easily my favourite band. I love Radiohead. It’s hard for me to put into words how I feel about their music. In the words of New Zealand music blogger Simon Sweetman:

[…] so much of the music is astonishing – so buoyant, beautifully crafted, a world of ideas in one pop song. As time goes on you notice there are fewer and fewer acts capable of this longevity, subtle reinvention and (fairly consistently) brilliant music.

I also have never before seen Radiohead live – I was too young to go to their last concert in New Zealand (in 1998!), and had been eagerly awaiting my chance since I moved to the Northern Hemisphere. I had tried to get tickets earlier in the year to go to a show in NYC – but they sold out almost immediately, which is fairly standard for Radiohead concerts. It’s almost unheard of for tickets to be available for a Radiohead show on the day. I swiftly checked Radiohead’s website……. the tickets for 29th May were “ON SALE NOW”. So of course I bought one. In my mind it will forever be the best reward for what has been a long and tiring academic year.

My seat was excellent, and the concert was amazing. A lot of people say that Radiohead’s music is depressing, which is an association I literally cannot understand at all, if one actually listens to their music. I blame it all on Creep. Anyway, no-one who was at that concert could ever say that their music is depressing. The show was, to use Simon Sweetman’s word again, buoyant. The band were relaxed, they were enjoying themselves, and also they were very polite. By which I mean, even though they’re extremely famous and could easily double the number of shows they do on tour and still have most of them sell out within 20 minutes, they were very gracious and thanked the audience many times, doing so genuinely.

Anyway, I could definitely continue writing about how much I like Radiohead, for a very long time, but that will quickly become uninteresting. Thank you, Stanley Donwood, for posting that particular t-shirt design on your blog. I am seriously grateful.

I’ll finish up with some of my favourite performances from the concert (I took these vids).


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