Oxford MBAs secretly worked alongside Thom Yorke’s management company helping brainstorm marketing ideas for his latest solo album Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes, the University has revealed. But before assembling “Team Yorke,” as the crack troupe of Saïd Business School candidates came to be known, the Radiohead frontman’s Courtyard Management firm fruitlessly attempted to mine a number of the University’s other departments first.
It would appear that for the task of crafting clever branding tactics, not all academic departments are created equal. “It was immensely useful to have the input of the MBA students on data analysis and new marketing strategies,” said a spokesperson for Courtyard Management. “Shame the same cannot be said for those great tits at the Edward Grey Institute of Field Ornithology. Fucking useless.”
Ethnobiologists were not the only malefactors, it seems. According to Courtyard, researchers in the Quantum Physics department insisted that the album was “mostly empty.” And students at the Oxford Centre for Buddhist Studies added: “In emptiness, there is no form, no feeling, no perception, no formation, no consciousness; no eye, no ear, no nose, no tongue, no body, no mind, no ignorance, no end of ignorance, no old age and death, no end of old age and death; no suffering, no cessation of suffering, no wisdom, no attainment, no non-attainment, no modern nor obsolete boxes.”
In addition to approaching Oxford, representatives for Courtyard sought to enlist scholars from a host of other schools, with some hopefuls still contributing peripherally to the project. James Heckman, Director at the Center for the Economics of Human Development at the University of Chicago urged that higher sales could be achieved by “relaxing and/or removing the restrictions of regulators, music critics, and other self-appointed gatekeepers.”
However, during a misguided packaging focus group, confused hopefuls at the ITT Technical Institute mistakenly whittled yesterday’s old-fashioned boxes from Basla branches and stray twigs.
Nonetheless, the hand-made containers will see an exclusive expo at Manhattan’s Pace Gallery in Chelsea in 2015, where it is rumoured Marina Abramović is to open each box, one by one, over the course of the next 44 years. Sotheby’s confirmed that the collection will be acquired following the exhibition by the Joseph Cornell Estate. After a private preview, the American artist Matthew Barney raved, “They whittled the shit out of those boxes, God love them!”
Released September 26th via file-sharing site BitTorrent, the company declined to report official sales figures for the full album. But Reddit users have pointed out that Radiohead have since set up a website for similar future collaborations, entitled “LinkedIn Rainbows,” signalling that a new record cannot be far behind.