The Amer­i­can band’s singer, Britt Daniel, ad­mits to a wealth of in­flu­ences from punk to the clas­sic rock of Doors and Led Zep­pelin

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - LIVE & LOUD - SALLY BROWNE

Britt Daniel doesn’t read re­views any more. If he did he’d re­alise that his band was av­er­ag­ing four stars for their lat­est al­bum They Want My Soul.

In fact, US band Spoon were named Artist of the Decade by web­site Me­ta­critic for be­ing the best-re­viewed band, on av­er­age, for the 2000s.

Now, even the main­stream has caught on with their past two records, 2010’s Trans­fer­ence and this year’s They Want My Soul, both en­ter­ing the US charts at No. 4.

So with all the good re­views, how is it he doesn’t get a swollen head?

“By fo­cus­ing on the few bad ones,” Daniel says. “Ac­tu­ally I haven’t been read­ing re­views for the last cou­ple of records. I don’t need to see that stuff. For a lot of peo­ple, and cer­tainly my­self, you can read 10 good re­views and the only thing that stands out is the one bad one.

“The real thing is I just don’t want to lose my own vi­sion of what I should be do­ing.”

It seems the mu­sic me­dia mafia still has a pow­er­ful in­flu­ence.

“I think it has a lot of power,” Daniel says. “I think that’s one part of the mu­sic in­dus­try that is still sig­nif­i­cant. It still holds sway with a cer­tain num­ber of peo­ple, prob­a­bly the same num­ber of peo­ple.”

Daniel ad­mits to read­ing those mag­a­zines him­self, grow­ing up in Texas, where he would head down to the state’s mu­sic cap­i­tal of Austin to pore through record shops and pick up copies of Rolling Stone, Spin and NME. There were a lot of bands he idolised then.

“I was re­ally into the Cure, still am. I started out in high school be­ing all about new wave and punk rock and to­wards the sec­ond half of it I started re­al­is­ing that there was a lot of great stuff in clas­sic rock as well, so I got into the Doors and Led Zep­pelin.”

What­ever his mu­si­cal lin­eage, it’s gone into a solid mix with Spoon’s eighth al­bum prov­ing just what they’re made of. Sin­gles like Do You al­ready sound like pre-made clas­sics.

But let’s ask Britt him­self. What kind of film would a Spoon film be?

“I don’t know,” he says. “I’d like it to be dark and dra­matic, with some black hu­mour. And maybe some ju­ve­nile hu­mour as well.”

While vi­su­als may tra­di­tion­ally dom­i­nate over sound, in some ways mu­sic tran­scends other art forms.

“It works in a sin­gu­lar way that no other medium does,” Daniel says. “I would guess that it has a more di­rect tie to our emo­tions than a vis­ual medium. But it’s weird be­cause vis­ual medi­ums al­ways seem to trump the au­dio medium. If you have the two go­ing at the same time, the video of what you’re see­ing is prob­a­bly go­ing to lead and the mu­sic is sort of the un­der­cur­rent that might get to you with­out you know­ing it.”

In be­tween Spoon al­bums, Daniel has been work­ing on his other project, Di­vine Fits, a band he started with Dan Boeck­ner of Wolf Pa­rade. It seemed to be time to make an­other Spoon record.

“It just seemed like it had been too long since we’d made a record. When I told Spoon about Di­vine Fits, I said, ‘I’m go­ing to go do this thing with Dan, we’re start­ing a band, I want to do it, I need to do it, but when I’ve done some shows I def­i­nitely want to make an­other Spoon record’. It was al­ways some­thing that was go­ing to hap­pen.”

Now, the band are look­ing for­ward to hit­ting the road for an in­ter­na­tional tour.

“I’ve said this be­fore that live shows can be more im­me­di­ately grat­i­fy­ing, but the most im­por­tant thing is the records,” Daniel says.

Britt Daniel (in white) fronts US band Spoon, who are head­ing to Bris­bane.

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