Tag Archives: Britt Daniel

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Spoon Deliver Career-Spanning Set at Brooklyn Steel on Tuesday Night

November 29th, 2017

Spoon – Brooklyn Steel – November 28, 2017


Few bands have been as consistently great for as long as Spoon have. It was a claim music critics might have made maybe five years ago, and Spoon have since released another classic album and another one after that, too. Last night the Austin, Texas, group sold out Brooklyn Steel for their first New York City show since the release of the much-acclaimed Hot Thoughts. Their set list could have pulled from any Spoon era and the energetic crowd would’ve been satisfied. Instead, fans got a career-spanning set, a welcomed reminder for Spoonheads that this band’s catalog is now a very deep well.

The performance kicked off with the Hot Thoughts banger, “Do I Have to Talk You Into It,” with the bouncy synth and keyboard arpeggios welcoming Spoon to the stage. They were backlit with intensely bright colors reminiscent of the Hot Thoughts album cover, alternating between warm and cool tones to match song spirits. For “The Beast and Dragon, Adored” the stage turned a hellfire crimson red. “I Turn My Camera On” began with an epic jam featuring some wobbly guitar harmonics. It had the song feeling almost like a reimagined early era Modest Mouse number (think “Dramamine”). Frontman Britt Daniel faced some sound issues with his guitar mid-set but they made the best of it. If nothing else, it provided the rest of the band ample time to mutate the typically classic-sounding rock jam “Don’t You Evah” into an all-out noise-rock jam.

“The Underdog,” a clear fan favorite, might be the closest thing we’ll get to a Spoon theme song. For a band cast aside by their major label early on, only to have a long career championed by indie labels, lines like “You got no fear of the underdog/ That’s why you will not survive,” sound like an epic FU to the major labels blindsided by the music era in which Spoon have flourished. Their encore kicked off with Daniel alone on guitar singing “I Summon You” followed by the early career favorite “Metal Detektor” off 1998’s A Series of Sneaks. They ended the night with “Hot Thoughts” and “Rent I Pay.” One more thing worth noting is the greatness of drummer Jim Eno, a man who doesn’t get enough credit. In a live setting, it’s striking how many Spoon songs are carried by an on point Eno rhythm. He’s a drummer in the spirit of Ringo Starr. In a way he’s the band’s ethos personified—nothing too flashy or over the top, just always on point, on rhythm and, well, consistently fucking great. —Dan Rickershauser | @D4nRicks

Photos courtesy of Adela Loconte | adelaloconte.com

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Grow a Pair: Win Free Tickets to See Spoon on 11/29

November 28th, 2017

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Beloved Austin, Texas, four-piece Spoon bring their newest album, Hot Thoughts, to Kings County this week to play Brooklyn Steel tonight and tomorrow. Both appearances sold out right away, but The House List is giving away two tickets to tomorrow’s show. Don’t have any and want to go? Try to Grow a Pair. It’s easy. Just fill out the form below, making sure to include your full name, email address, which show you’re trying to win tickets to (Spoon, 11/29) and a brief message explaining your favorite tune on the new LP. Eddie Bruiser, who’s still full from Thanksgiving, will notify the winner by tomorrow afternoon.

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Spoon Sound Right at Home at Kings Theatre in Brooklyn

June 17th, 2015

Spoon – Kings Theatre – June 16, 2015

Spoon – Kings Theatre – June 16, 2015
It was a study in contrasts last night as the beautifully restored Kings Theatre in Brooklyn hosted the Austin, Texas, five-piece Spoon. One of the borough’s most ornate, intricately decorated performance venues showcased a band with a knack for the minimal. Spoon’s crisp, neat compositions sounded right at home in the grand concert hall, beginning with “Rent I Pay” and “Knock Knock Knock,” from their recent album, They Want My Soul.

While they have made this their specialty for years, on their new recordings, Spoon have grown even more adept at crafting catchy songs with hidden complexity, as evidenced by their performance of numbers from early in their catalog, like “The Way We Get By,” from 2002’s Kill the Moonlight, and “Fitted Shirt” and “Anything You Want,” off 2011’s Girls Can Tell, each song appealing and spare.

Spoon’s performance style has an overall attention to detail, highlighted last night by frontman Britt Daniel’s perfectly timed jump at the end of “Small Stakes,” drummer Jim Eno’s crisp and precise percussion at the beginning of “Don’t You Evah,” the interweaving call-and-response style chorus at the end of “I Turn My Camera On,” and the acoustic guitar’s soft tone on the gentle “I Summon You.” And by the end of the night, it was obvious that the band and the venue have something in common after all: an abundance of details and flourishes in both decor and in music, with some just more overt than others. —Alena Kastin | @AlenaK

Photos courtesy of Pip Cowley | pipcowleyshoots.com

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Spoon Make a Beautiful Night in Central Park Even Better

September 11th, 2014

Spoon – Rumsey Playfield – September 10, 2014

Spoon – Rumsey Playfield – September 10, 2014
Last night was perfect to see music outdoors, the temperature was just right and the conditions were breezy, not blustery. The same could be said for Spoon, the Austin, Texas, five-piece that made high-level rock and roll look easy with little bluster at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. With equal parts grit in his guitar and his voice, Britt Daniel kicked off things with “Knock Knock Knock,” off Spoon’s newest release, They Want My Soul. The crowd was a catchall mix of types: boozy college girls, graying rockers, new parents enjoying a night out, giddy Spoon geeks with tour T-shirts and a running set list on their phones, and everything in between. The career-spanning set appealed to them all, each song drawing excited reactions and sing-alongs from at least one or two happy fans.

The show hit its stride early with the clavinet-heavy groover “Small Stakes,” off 2002’s Kill the Moonlight, and “Inside Out” and its ethereal three-keyboard breakdown. The stage was set up with large white-sheet panels that filled with light and shadows. Each song was enhanced with its own color palette, the mood running through a rock and roll rainbow of sorts. So there was “Who Makes Your Money” in mellow pink with a matching bass riff and ripping guitar; summer-sun orange for “Rhthm and Soul,” a muted purple-orange mix for the chunky guitar-and-piano voodoo rock of “My Mathematical Mind”; and a particularly saucy guitar jam in green for “Got Nuffin.”

Daniel switched to an acoustic guitar for a couple of highlights, including the set-closing “Black Like Me,” which began with no color at all, murky shadows on the panels until a high-energy bridge in white, a mirrored pyramid suspended above the stage became a primitive disco ball as the audience sang, “Yeah!” along with the band. The three-song encore was, as it should be, highlighted by the hits everyone wanted to hear: “You Got Yr Cherry Bomb” in cherry red (natch) and a big, sing-along “The Underdog” in pretty much every color of the rainbow. —A. Stein

Photos courtesy of Pip Cowley | pipcowleyphotography.tumblr.com

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Spoon Return to Play Rumsey Playfield in Central Park

September 9th, 2014

After releasing Girls Can Tell (stream it below) and Kill the Moonlight (stream it below) in consecutive years around the turn of the century, Spoon made the transition from underrated band to one of the bigger names in all of alternative rock, thanks to what AllMusic calls “a heady blend of precision punk and serpentine classic rock.” Their seventh album, the excellent Transference (stream it below), came out in 2010—Spoon have since blossomed from a four-piece into a five-piece with Alex Fischel (keys and guitar) joining Britt Daniel (vocals and guitar), Jim Eno (drums), Eric Harvey (keys and vocals) and Rob Pope (bass and vocals)—so it’s safe to say fans have been patiently awaiting the Austin, Texas, group’s latest effort, They Want My Soul (stream it below), which came out last month to some considerable acclaim. Rolling Stone called the album “an immediate grabber on par with the group’s best work to date” and added that the band has “always done surprisingly well on their own terms, in their own world. And that world sounds bigger and brighter than ever.” Spoon (above, performing “Inside Out” last night on Late Show with David Letterman) bring their engaging live show to New York City tomorrow night at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. Arrive early to see !!! and Operators.

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Divine Fits Hit Webster Hall Sunday Night

October 19th, 2012

How often have you had a conversation with someone at a concert about doing something in the future that never came to fruition? Fortunately, when Spoon frontman Britt Daniel ran into Wolf Parade guitarist Dan Boeckner at a show, their discussion of forming a band together didn’t fall by the wayside. Sure, it took a little bit of time, but the payoff—joining together with New Bomb Turks drummer Sam Brown to form Divine Fits—was more than worth it. With the help of Alex Fischel on keys, the trio put out an album, the very well-received A Thing Called Divine Fits (stream it below), in late August. And despite this seeming like it could be a one-off experience, Pitchfork says Bockener and Daniel say it’s an ongoing project “and rock fans should hope they stick to their promise.” But even if they don’t, you can still see Divine Fits (above, playing “My Love Is Real” for Studio Q) at Webster Hall on Sunday.

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From Haiti to Williamsburg

January 25th, 2010

Haiti Benefit – Music Hall of Williamsburg – January 23, 2010

Zach Galifianakis

Zach Galifianakis

In the wake of the earthquake that devastated the people and capital city of Haiti, individuals and organizations have responded with an outpouring of humanitarian aid. Telethons, tweets and texts have raised millions of dollars. However, a sustained effort on the part of global citizens is necessary as Haiti continues to recover and rebuild. Toward that end, The Bowery Presents and Brooklyn Vegan teamed up to assemble an incredible group of comedians and musicians for a Haiti benefit on Saturday night at the Music Hall of Williamsburg. The full lineup consisted of Zach Galifianakis, Britt Daniel (of Spoon), Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver), St. Vincent, Janeane Garofalo, Wyatt Cenac (of The Daily Show) and the live debut of John Shade. While each performer did an abbreviated set, the night featured some hilarious jokes and breathtaking songs.

Musicians and comedians alternated their sets with Leo Allen and Bobby Tisdale acting as MCs. Jokes ranged from Cenac making fun of PETA to just about every comedian ragging on Williamsburg hipsters. “This used to be a good neighborhood,” yelled Galifianakis during his show-stealing performance. The slovenly and unkempt comic kept the audience off-kilter with a barrage of absurdist one-liners. He even pulled off the difficult task of bringing satire to the night’s cause when he joked, “I was doing Haiti benefits before the earthquake.”

The musicians in attendance provided a bevy of incredibly heartfelt originals and covers. Daniel appeared with White Rabbits drummer Jamie Levinson and opened with a stripped-down, guitar version of John Lennon’s “Isolation.” His distinctive falsetto and off-the-cuff vocals also colored my favorite song on Spoon’s new album, Transference, “Who Makes Your Money.” St. Vincent followed with Jackson Browne’s “These Days” and the National’s “Mistaken for Strangers.” All stood transfixed by St. Vincent’s soft guitar work and lithe vocals. Vernon joined in for her song “The Party,” and the two collaborated on a crowd-pleasing rendition of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene.” For all in attendance, the event showed an outpouring of support and a gracious display of talent. —Jared Levy

Photos courtesy of Jen Macchiarelli | www.jennylow.com