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Interview:
Spoon at the Fillmore Detroit, 5 Things To Know
 

By Gary Graff
ggraff@digitalfirstmedia.com, @GraffonMusic onTwit

» See more SOUND CHECK

Spoon has been dishing up music out of Austin, Texas, and elsewhere for nearly 25 years now, and the group hasn’t tired of it yet.

Spoon’s ninth and latest album, “Hot Thoughts,” came out during mid-March and marks a time of change for the group. Multi-instrumentalist Eric Harvey left the band last year, before the album was recorded, and Spoon also switched labels, returning to Matador Records, which released its debut album, “Telephono,” in 1996. Spoon continues the tradition of working with outside co-producers, which began with 2014’s “They Want My Soul,” and the sound of “Hot Thoughts” has a fresh kind of spacious, kinetic energy to the mix.

All of that gives co-founder and drummer Jim Eno plenty to talk about from his home base back in Austin...

• With the departure of Eric Harvey in 2016, Spoon recorded the “Hot Thoughts” album as a quartet, But Eno, 52, says the group is used to recording in all sorts of configurations over the course of a project. “We sort of work on it with a lot of different numbers of band members,” he explains. “Britt (Daniel) and Alex (Fischel) get together in L.A. sometimes. Sometimes Britt and I will get together in Austin. Sometimes me, Alex and Britt...It’s a long process, and whoever is needed comes in at the right time.”

• Eno says the starting point for “Hot Thoughts” was actually “Inside Out,” an airy, kinetic track from Spoon’s last album, 2014’s “They Want My Soul.” “That was the last song we recorded and it was pretty much our favorite song on that album,” Eno recalls. “So that to us is like the stepping off point for ‘Hot Thoughts.’ We were really into the sonics of that song, the feel and just everything about it. It seems like a really good transition to the new record.”

• As for the overall sound of “Hot Thoughts,” Eno says that, “sonically I feel like it’s our best and most interesting (album). I feel like it’s a record with a lot of action. I feel like there’s exciting parts, like the string solo section in ‘Can I Sit Next To You’ or the direct guitar solos in ‘Hot Thoughts’ that I think are amazing. Those kinds of things really excite us.”

• “Hot Thoughts” was co-produced by Dave Fridmann of Flaming Lips fame, and collaborating with others is a recent development after Eno and Daniel produced most of Spoon’s previous albums themselves. “I think it’s great,” says Eno, who’s produced a number of other artists. “It’s really hard for me to produce and play. It’s really difficult; I feel like I lose a lot of the perspective. When I’m not doing anything but producing and engineering I have a lot better vision. So with Spoon I would much rather play and get some direction. As long as everybody thinks it’s cool, I’m all for it.”

• “Hot Thoughts” also returns Spoon to its original label, Matador Records,” for the first time since its 1996 debut, “Telephone.” “We’ve always loved that label,” Eno says. “They’re friends of ours, so we’ve kept in touch with them. I feel like one of the things you can’t manufacture when it comes to a relationship with a label is enthusiasm, and they were really excited about the record and really wanted to put it out. That made a huge difference. Back in the day, when we first started, we said if we can be successful it would be really great to be successful on Matador. So it’s great to be back there again.”



If You Go

• Spoon and Cherry Glazerr

• Tuesday, Aug. 1. Doors open at 7 p.m.

• The Fillmore Detroit, 2115 Woodward Ave.

• Tickets are $29.50-$45.

• Call 313-961-5451 or visit thefillmoredetroit.com.

Web Site: www.thefillmoredetroit.com

Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff

 



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