Bodysnatchers

Album: In Rainbows (2007)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • 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."

Comments: 8

  • Gray from ClevelandBrilliant.
  • Anima Mundi from South AfricaThis song symbolizes the beginning of most LSD trips I have experience - it sounds and describes exactly how I feel at the time, even the lyrics! I am anxious, excited, unsure and sure all at the same time; a motley crew of heightened and agitated emotions, realities and hallucinations all thrown together with an underlying tone of merriment. Luckily not the stripper part at least - that must be really hectic.
  • Valo from Moscow, Russia FederationThe other guitar-driven track Bangers and Mash has a guitar ыуе similar to Bassheads - Is There Anybody Out There

    Ben, doing u2 better than u2 is not har at all, really
  • Bobby B from North West, United KingdomTheir most Pablo Honey-esque track in years, in my opinion. Much more mature and well rounded, but the soloing towards the end (and especially the bent note on the guitar slowly falling at the very end) is typical of the way they ended their rockier songs on P.H.
  • Nelson from P-goula, MsWhen I went to the first concert in ATL during May 2008, I remember Thom saying this song was about a party he attended where the drinks had been laced with acid. Then everyone turned into strippers.

    Did anyone else hear this at the concert or a similar one somewhere?
  • Ben from Lexington, KyThe second half of this song to me always sounds like Radiohead doing U2 better than U2.
  • Joe from Baltimore, MdAlthough the album itself is phenomenonal, I think this track truly stands out from the others. Great song!
  • Horatio from Washington, DcCould part of it be inspired by the memoir Le scaphandre et le papillon (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) by French journalist Jean-Dominique Bauby? Bauby had a stroke and was only able to blink one eye - once for Yes, twice for No. He had what what is called "Locked-in syndrome" in which he was fully conscious, but "trapped" in his body.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Rock Stars of Horror

Rock Stars of HorrorMusic Quiz

Rock Stars - especially those in the metal realm - are often enlisted for horror movies. See if you know can match the rocker to the role.

Rickie Lee Jones

Rickie Lee JonesSongwriter Interviews

Rickie Lee Jones on songwriting, social media, and how she's handling Trump.

Trans Soul Rebels: Songs About Transgenderism

Trans Soul Rebels: Songs About TransgenderismSong Writing

A history of songs dealing with transgender issues, featuring Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Morrissey and Green Day.

Francis Rossi of Status Quo

Francis Rossi of Status QuoSongwriter Interviews

Doubt led to drive for Francis, who still isn't sure why one of Status Quo's biggest hits is so beloved.

Weird Al Yankovic

Weird Al YankovicFact or Fiction

Did Al play on a Beach Boys record? Did he have beef with George Lucas and Coolio? See if you can spot weird but true stories.

Adam Duritz of Counting Crows

Adam Duritz of Counting CrowsSongwriter Interviews

"Mr. Jones" took on new meaning when the song about a misguided view of fame made Adam famous.