(photo courtesy of Kathryn Yu)
So, understandably, people want to know what we think of "The Ghost of You Lingers" -- the preview track from the new Spoon record, Ga ga ga ga ga.
It seems like a lot of people really hate it.
We think it's really great. And here's why.
The wonderful thing about Spoon records is that they always reveal what's on heavy rotation in Britt's record collection.
Remember when Spoon songs kinda sounded like Replacements songs? And Wire songs? Or John Lennon songs? It's cute, because Spoon songs never ape the influences, but send them through the weird filter of the band's songwriting grammar (uh huh! yeah! all right!), and the result is something charming and rarefied and unpretentious, all at once.
Spoon -- Car Radio
Spoon -- Mountain of Sound
Spoon -- Everything Hits At Once
Spoon -- Stay Don't Go
See? Uh huh -- you know what I'm talking about.
Someone over on Idolator namechecked Steve Reich and Philip Glass in the discussion about "The Ghost of You Lingers." That's sounds about right. There's nothing here but synthy bits pounding out a Glass-y hypertensive rhythm. And Britt's multi-tracked vocals. And the occasional atmospheric electronic crunch or swirly wisp of a marimba or steel drum under that that echoes soundscapes from previous albums. And that's it. No, really. THAT IS ALL. For the whole song. But it's not that different from say, the grammar of "Stay Don't Go," you know? Just without the BrittBeatBox action.
It would appear that maybe this is Spoon's record in the modern classical/experimental mode? I mean, things had been heading that way for a while now -- I mean, most of Kill the Moonlight was ultra-minimal, with a whole lot of low pile noise made by the rhythm section going on in the background and on top of that, spartan melodies with canyons about three miles wide running right through the middle--but Gimme Fiction was a little more, how you say... accessible.
Now, we can't absolutely say for certain what's going on with Ga, etc., and if it's entirely a return to form as promised on Kill the Moonlight because we haven't heard the rest (we have it, we just haven't listened to it quite yet...busy!). But we're hedging our bets that basically, this is the kind of record that says:
"Yeah, we know you loved our hits 'Way We Get By' as heard on the hit television series "The O.C." and 'I Turn My Camera On' from that Verizon commercial, but really, that's not who we are. Oh, um, you thought we wrote catchy indie anthems? Well, you know, not so much. We're actually trying to bring back No Wave. Again. Please enjoy this anti-album full of anti-melodies. LOVE AND KISSES, SPOON."Spoon -- The Ghost of You Lingers