Spoon | 07.15.08 | New York

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Words & Images by: JC McIlwaine

Spoon :: 07.15.08 :: Prospect Park Bandshell :: New York, NY

Spoon :: 07.25 :: New York
White Rabbits were the second of two opening acts, following Jay Reatard. Lead vocalist Greg Roberts and two of his bandmates wore ’80s style Ray-Bans that, combined with a dress code befitting an East Hampton garage, made the band look like they had just stepped off of The Blues Brothers backlot. Appearances aside, it’s hard to lose with two drummers, two guitarists, keys and a bassist who doubles on percussion. The band rocked. Check them out.

Spoon came on just after dark and hammered through more than twenty songs over the course of an hour and a half. They drew largely from their two most recent albums, Gimme Fiction and Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, playing versions very faithful to the original recordings. Lead singer and guitarist Britt Daniel danced with his guitar in a rhythmic and jolting fashion reminiscent of Elvis. When he wasn’t playing to his guitar, Daniel was playing to his amp, on his knees feeding the monitor sound back into his guitar, and occasionally throwing an echo effect on the vocals for good measure.

A couple of songs into the set, a horn section joined the band for a couple of numbers, including “Rhythm Is Soul” and “You Got Your Cherry Bomb.” The horns returned later in the set for amped-up versions of “The Two Sides of Monsieur Valentine,” “Stay Don’t Go” and the crowd-pleaser of last year’s radio-friendly hit “The Underdog.” As Spoon hit the first chorus of “The Underdog,” the members of White Rabbits rushed in from the side of the stage. They danced on the drum riser and clapped and sang along with the crowd before rushing back off-stage as the next verse started, only to return for each successive chorus.

Spoon treated the crowd to three encores, each a tale of love or longing (“Finer Feelings,” “Black Like Me” and “Me And The Bean”) before dishing up one of the highlights of the night. “We’ve got the horns back. This is a song we really like to play with horns,” commented Daniels as the band ripped into a spot-on cover of The Rolling Stones‘ “Rocks Off.” “I only get my rocks off while I’m sleeping,” sang Daniel, putting the finishing touches on the encore set’s theme of loneliness. And with that the band sent the Brooklyn crowd off to bed.

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