How Hans Zimmer and Thom Yorke Adapted an Existing Radiohead Song For BBC’s Blue Planet II

With the announcement of the BBC Blue Planet II prequel series, video producer Christophe Haubursin of Vox took a deep dive into the process by which composer Hans Zimmer, Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood quite beautifully remixed an existing Radiohead song entitled “Bloom” into a gorgeously rich orchestral piece that worked perfectly with the series. Using the concept of a “tidal orchestra”, each musician only played when the person next to them wasn’t.

…it’s a musical effect created by instructing each player to play their notes only if the person next to them isn’t playing. The result is a randomly swelling and fading musical bed for the entire series that captures the feeling of ocean waves. It’s a captivating way to score a soundtrack for the ocean — but it also fits in with a long history of capturing randomness in music composition.

Here’s the full interview with Zimmer, Yorke and Greenwood at BBC Studios.