Guitarist Ed O'Brien posted a message about this guitar-driven song on Radiohead.com on October 22, 2005, writing, "It's always difficult to judge right now but I think we may have got 'Bodysnatchers'." The song was first played live in 2006.
In an interview with the New Musical Express December 8, 2007, the interviewer commented that he felt this was the most aggressive sounding Radiohead track to date. Lead singer Thom Yorke replied: "I have this thing... just before I get sick I'll have this 120 hour hyperactive mania and that song was recorded during one of those. I felt genuinely out of it when we did that. The vocal is one take and we didn't do anything to it afterwards. We tidied up my guitar because I was so out of it, my guitar playing was rubbish. My best vocals are always the ones that happen there and then."
This was recorded at Tottenham House in Wiltshire England, a Grade-I listed building, which dates back to the 1720s. In an interview with the Columbia Daily Spectator November 30, 2007, Ed O'Brien commented on this song: "'Bodysnatchers' will always remind us of Tottenham House, a decrepit mansion where we recorded some of the album. This track reflects the weird energy of the house."
In an interview in the August 2006 Mojo magazine, Thom Yorke described this song as: "A little bit like Neu! meets dodgy hippy rock. It sounds like that new Australian band Wolfmother - I really like them actually."
In an article in the New York Times December 9, 2007, Thom Yorke said this song was inspired by Victorian ghost stories, The Stepford Wives and his own feeling of "your physical consciousness trapped without being able to connect fully with anything else."