It was originally a secret show spread simply by word of mouth, but Austinites have an uncanny ability to find any concert anywhere. “I couldn’t decide if I wanted to see Spoon or wait for Harry Potter,” a young girl in cat-eyed glasses said into her cell phone while in line for Spoon. I can’t imagine that there would be that much of a decision, but working in bookstores for the last three Harry Potters will jade you a little.
We got in line at about 7pm behind people with books and chairs that had been waiting quite a while longer. During sound check, fans wedged their cameras in between the fence just to get a shot of Britt Daniel.
The opening act, Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears, were a James Brown throw back, minus the crack. Although his music wasn’t necessarily from the same scene as Spoon’s, there was a discernable glow on the faces of a crowd that came for Britt, even after Mr. Lewis had departed the stage.
Spoon’s new album, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga has been met with some folks scratching their heads. Not because of the album title, but the album itself. Still, mixed reviews can be a good and bad thing. The transition from Gimme Fiction to Ga… was obviously a long journey, the result being a more delicate but still fervently innovative album.
Spoon live is smart and technical. They leave the subtleties of their studio albums behind and delivery each song with crowd-pleasing determination. All the criticism aside, the guys put on a killer show. Britt was his usual hip elf looking self, having some slight electrical problems in the beginning but staying calm. I felt as if they were working out some kinks with the new songs, and this was a chance to test them out. It was obvious the band was concentrating and trying to get in a groove, but that was to their advantage, because the sound was tight and savvy as always. “I Turn My Camera On” was noticeably absent among ” The Underdog” and “Don’t Make Me a Target”, both of which were equally as driven and sharp.
From here, it’s a jaunt all over the US, but they wont be forgetting their home, where they’ll play the legendary Austin City Limits Music Festival in September.