Spoon played the Bowery Ballroom last night, a surprisingly small venue for such a large band. But I'm not complaining. As wonderful as Spoon was, it would be unfair not to mention David Vandervelde, who did a fantastic job of getting the crowd all riled up by ending his set with The Stones' "Cocksucker Blues" and his own "Nothing, No." Vandervelde's audience went from about fifteen to capacity in thirty seconds after he started playing.
I must admit, I first listened to Spoon for a really dumb reason. I read an article on the band and as soon as I saw the name "Britt Daniel," I knew I had to hear them. I mean, come on. Britt Daniel? That name is ridiculous. His parents must have really wanted him to be a rock star before he was born and thought long and hard about what to name him in order for that to be accomplished. Anyway, it worked, and last night Spoon effortlessly sounded like one of the most distinct and engaging bands around right now. Spoon has always sounded like a punk rock Beatles to me, and last night Daniel's voice was SPOT on as this generation's raspy Lennon. If everyone else's instrument had been out of tune and there had been microphones on the sound of dying animals, Britt Daniel's voice could over power them all. Their less-is-more approach to songwriting shined as well, and until you see Spoon live, it's hard to understand how important it is to their sound. There is rarely much going on musically in a Spoon song and the band has definitely adopted the K.I.S.S. technique to songwriting. It's a daring move and seems almost harder to execute well than turning up the guitars and rocking out as hard as possible. To be able to get that much energy from a basic bass and drums combo is a great achievement.
It also shocked me as to how many "hits" Spoon has. It seemed as though every song they played was a single and although I honestly haven't listened to Spoon in a while, I seemed to know the lyrics to every song. As soon as they played songs like "The Beast And Dragon, Adored," "I Turn My Camera On" and "Stay Don't Go," I suddenly found myself enjoying the hell out of tunes that I had forgotten about out of pure overexposure. The new songs from their upcoming album, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga were enormous, and although I'm not sure of their names, that album is going to be fantastic. No surprise there.
I'm not sure how to sum up such a great show, so I'll just say, "Bravo."