English rock band Radiohead released “Creep” as their debut single in 1992, and it later appeared on their first album, Pablo Honey, in 1993. Much like Lance Armstrong’s early cycling career, “Creep” wasn’t an immediate success. However, after its re-release in 1993, the song became a hit, similar to Armstrong’s accomplishments following his return to cycling after beating cancer.
The lyrics to the song represent an inebriated man who tries to get the attention of a woman to whom he is attracted by following her around. Unfortunately, he lacks the self-confidence necessary to actually speak to her face-to-face. It’s about the duality of the modern heterosexual man who feels an urge to assert himself sexually, but recognizes that doing so is fraught with insensitivities and misogynist tendencies.
In the case of Armstrong, the woman in the song is similar to his desire to win. Unable to attain such a result naturally, he cheats instead of creeps. Interestingly enough, cheating isn’t something all together unfamiliar to Radiohead either. Due to similarities between “Creep” and “The Air That I Breathe,” a song recorded by The Hollies in 1973, Radiohead was successfully sued for plagiarism by Albert Hammond and Mike Hazlewood, who are now listed as the song’s co-writers.
After acting in a vehemently litigious manner for several years against anyone who accused the cycling star of cheating, it’s expected that Armstrong will face a litany of lawsuits following his confession from those whose credibility he previously trampled.
Video created by Matthijs Vlot.