ACL Artist Spotlight: Spoon

Written by on October 6, 2017

Austin is a city known for its music scene so it’s not surprising that talent brews on the streets and big names have started out there. Spoon is a rock band from ATX that formed in 1993 and has seen much success over the years.

Lead singer and guitarist Britt Daniel and drummer Jim Eno formed the band after being members of The Alien Beats together. They have been the core members while having a turnover for bass and keyboard over the past years. Current members consist of bassist Rob Pope and keyboard/guitar player Alex Fischel.

Widely labeled as a rock band, they see sound as defining and limiting and so do not stick with just that description. They are also commonly labeled as indie rock, indie pop, art rock and experimental rock. They utilize space in a way that creates the specific way in which they want their music to sound.

Their first recording was on vinyl – an EP titled Nefarious (1994) following which they signed with Matador Records and went on to release LP Telefono (1996) and another EP Soft Effects (1997). The latter was a turning point that moved their sound into a more unique and tuned sound.

In 1998 they signed with Elektra Records, which was founded by the Pixies and though their time with the label was short, that same year they released A Series of Sneaks. 2 years later in 2000, they signed with Merge Records, an indie label, which they are to this day a part of. In that first year, they released EP Love Ways followed by LP Girl Can Tell. The latter was an expression of simple arrangements and less traditional sound that proved to be a success.

“The Way We Get By” from Kill the Moonlight brought them exposure after being featured in the film Stranger Than Fiction, the first episode of the US version of the show Shameless and The O.C. Their next album, Gimme Fiction (2005) debuted them at number 44 on the Billboard 200 and the following albums Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (2007) and Transference (2010) brought them to number 10 and number 4, respectively.

Their 2014 album They Want My Soul scored them an 8.6 with Pitchfork and distinguished them as a distinctive band of this generation who stray from the expectations of the media that want to overexpose artists. Instead, they wait 3 years and release their ninth album Hot Thoughts with Matador Records, the first album on that label since 1996. It is a complete display of them as musicians – still the same with great lyrics yet modified with electronic vibes.

Spoon don’t view their careers as commercial production of music but rather as album progression – growing and developing with each one to reflect their creativity and experiences.

This Austin originated band is coming back to its roots both Saturdays for ACL October 6-8 and 13-15. Buy tickets here today!


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