Spoon, "Don't Make Me A Target" (YSI link)
Spoon, "The Underdog" (YSI link)
Spoon, "You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb [alternate take]" (YSI link)
Okay, here's the end of the road for now on the male-fronted, indie rock front. Spoon is the Austin-based band led by guitarist and vocalist Britt Daniel, who have slowly but surely built up quite a following. I jumped on the bandwagon with their last one, Gimme Fiction; well, I didn't jump on the bandwagon, that was just the first time I listened to them. For me, it was an uneven record that had nice highs, but not enough of them.
Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga came out two months ago and that makes me lame and irrelevant, but by procrastinating, I was able to get the bonus edition extra disc. Tortoise and the hare, my friends, tortoise and the hare. Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga is a better album than the previous one, more consistent and a little more musically adventurous. It's high points, like "The Underdog" and "You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb," are beautiful, infectious, pop songs. They make you tap your foot and singalong, augmented by horns and tamborines that give them a timeless feelk, like they would have fit perfectly in a 60s AM radio set. For the most part, they stick to this formula, despite all of the talk about experimentation and whatnot. You do get the dub-like vocals of "The Ghost Of You Lingers," which attempt to evoke a haunting atmosphere. It doesn't work for me, just seems gimmicky and dilutes whatever power could have been had for a song about love lost. That's one of the few missteps. While it's one of the shortest LPs I've heard, clocking in at 36 minutes, it doesn't feel like it's missing anything. Initially, it feels like a you got shortchanged, but repeated listens make you realize that this is just an extra focused album, like they wrote 10 great songs (in their opinion) and that's that.
I'm recommend this album, although I cannot recommend purchasing the deluxe edition. It's basically a disc of 1 minute instrumentals and throwaway, a pathetic attempt to get fans to buy the CD again. Don't. I included the alternate take of "You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb," one of the best songs on the album. This version is sort of a lo-fi space-y rock song; they chose the right take. Grab your copy here, it's hard for me to believe that this one wouldn't appeal to almost everyone.