Radiohead Launch Social Media Blackout Ahead Of New Album Release

Radiohead is dead — on social media, that is.

Without warning on May 1, the English rockers deleted all social media postings ahead of their rumored new album release. All of the posts on the band’s Twitter and Facebook accounts have been deleted, and the website has gone completely white. Posts on frontman Thom Yorke’s Twitter account have disappeared as well.

Speculation is that the social media blackout could have something to do with the group’s forthcoming as-yet untitled album, which does not have a release date but is rumored to drop the first half of 2016. The effort will be the followup up to the act’s 2011 album, The King of Limbs.

On Saturday, some U.K. Radiohead fans received cryptic “Burn the Witch” leaflets in the mail. “Sing the song of sixpence that goes ‘Burn the witch,'” read the leaflet. “We know where you live.”

As per Rolling Stone, “‘Burn the Witch’ refers to an unreleased Radiohead song that is at least 13 years old,” though a full version of the tune has never been played live.

Here’s a look at the “Burn the Witch” mailer:

Check out a few teases of Radiohead’s “Burn The Witch” played in 2006 and 2008:

Radiohead have sold more than 30 million albums worldwide, and the band has a history of unveiling their music in mysterious ways. Thom Yorke hit up record stores upon the release of King of Limbs to hand out Radiohead-themed newspapers. The album was released within days of the band announcing it. For their previous album, In Rainbows, fans were invited to pay any price to download the songs. Yorke’s most recent project, Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes, was gifted to fans for free via the download service BitTorrent. As the new album approaches, fans have discussed how they would like to receive it: “directly into my vein,” has been one suggestion, while another fan wrote on Twitter:

Radiohead’s latest album to be released exclusively on the feeling of existential dread that resides within us all.

Speaking at an event last month, Brian Message — a partner in Radiohead’s management company, Courtyard Management — said the band’s ninth studio album will be released in June, according to The Guardian. He refused to reveal its name, but said it was “something that will probably make many of us go, ‘Wow!'”.

He continued: “There’s nothing out there right now that sounds anything like this. And for some people that will be a good thing and for others that probably won’t.”

Comedian Stefanie Wilder-Taylor may have violated a non-disclosure agreement when she revealed that director Paul Thomas Anderson was spotted shooting a music video for Radiohead in her Los Angeles neighborhood last month. She recalled the interaction with Anderson — who was surveying her home for use as a set — during an episode of her For Crying Out Loud podcast.

“Then the guy goes – ‘it’s Radiohead!’ I can’t tell you anything about it,” Wilder-Taylor reportedly said. “I’m guessing that’s the non-disclosure part. Between us girls, Radiohead – I don’t give a s**t, I don’t get it. I’ve heard one song I don’t care about – ‘Creep’. Yeah, you’re a creep and a loser and you’re putting me to sleep.”

Radiohead will embark on a tour in late May, with appearances set for several major U.S. music festivals, including Lollapalooza and Outside Lands.

[Photo by Dave Martin/AP]