Here’s a band, that haven’t played any gigs in the UK this year, and won’t have a new record available in a shop for you to go and buy until New Year’s Eve: so why feature them in a guide to the bands that have shaped our 2007?

The answer is, of course, a pretty obvious one. Radiohead hit the headlines in early October, when it was announced that, within a fortnight of news breaking, album number seven could be owned. They would also take the novel step of letting fans decide what price to pay to download the ten tracks that made up ‘In Rainbows’.

The band’s forum was full of discussions as to what was right to give. Many fans, who as we know are among the most dedicated to their cause, said they would part with the equivalent cash that would be asked for in a shop or by an online retailer. However it turns out over 60% of people paid nothing.

Stats recorded by the internet monitoring company Comscore show that only 38% actually paid for ‘In Rainbows’. In addition, the average price paid for the album was £2.22, with Americans reportedly the most generous, paying an average of £3.85.

Those sitting in the critical corner might argue that this was only a token gesture from Radiohead, since they’re in a position to be able to give their music away totally free given the number 1 albums they’ve had both in the UK and the US. However it can’t be doubted that the set your own price exercise, which allows fans to consider what they believe to be the financial value of a collection of songs, is certainly an interesting and worthy one. It would have been made more interesting if their was a refunds option for those who decided that, after hearing the thing, they’d misjudged it’s worth when they’d preordered.

You can read more on what the album, which hits shops in the traditional CD form on December 31, is like by clicking here.

The spotlight now turns to when Radiohead will take to a stage again.

Their last major UK gigs were at the V Festival and T on the Fringein 2006 which followed a short tour of smaller venues earlier in the year.

In a recent interview with BBC 6Music, the band admitted that their 2008 tour is taking shape. First up is expected to be the US in May, with dates in the UK in June: go on say Glastonbury, we know you were thinking it!

“Everything is on the agenda,” said bassist Ed O’Brian. “We are finalising dates at the moment, so we will see. If they (Glastonbury) want us, which we don’t know yet, then we have schedule A, B and C to be decided.”

When and wherever they turn up here in 2008, it’s bound to be one of the most talked about live music events of the year. To be continued as they say.

Dates that are already known include festivals in Germany in June, and an appearance at Roskilde in Denmark over the weekend of July 3-6.

Finally, we couldn’t let an article on the year in the life of Radiohead news pass without mentioning the hoax which preceded the announcement that ‘In Rainbows’ was turning up out of the relative blue.

As expected a website claiming to be a countdown to news on the next Radiohead album was a fake.

The site had a clock counting down to 8 AM September 29, but most fans weren't expecting to see anything on Radiohead after this point.

Despite being a fake, top marks go for comedy effort as after 8 AM, anyone clicking on the site were taken to a new page which read: "The most gigantic lying hoax of all time", before diverting users to a YouTube video for the eighties number 1 hit, Rick Astley's 'Never Gonna Give You Up', brilliant!

See the rest of the list of featured artists