It's all there on the songs that emerged from the tortuous recordings for The Bends. Written at the height of the band's obsession with Morrissey's Vauxhall And I (and, according to Thom, you can hear as much), "My Iron Lung" remains an alarming metaphor for the success of "Creep": "Here is our new song/Just like the last one/A total waste of time/My iron lung." "High And Dry", by contrast, is heavy with the weariness of 300 nights away: "Kill yourself for recognition/Kill yourself to never ever stop."
Following his return to his basement flat in Oxford, one evening saw Yorke falling into "a sort of drunken coma and singing a song which became '[Nice Dream]'. That song refers to a story by Kurt Vonnegut where this crystal's been found that turns all water completely solid and someone drops it into the sea. If you want to kill yourself you just put your finger into the water."