Spoon – Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
Acquired: Love Garden, New, 2007
I know it's early, but down the line this could end up being THEE Spoon record. I know Kill the Moonlight and Girls Can Tell are already viewed as classics, but in ten, fifteen years? I think Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga might be the masterpiece of the late great Spoon. I can imagine Britt Daniel performing under his own name but throwing such classics as “You've Got Yr Cherry Bomb” and “Don't Make Me a Target” into his set. Maybe he'd close with the pensive “Black Like Me,” which despite it's bizarre title, given that I am fairly certain Daniel is not black, is one of the sadder, more yearning songs I've ever heard. I remember last summer, listening to that song in the car on repeat after midnight. On the way back from the bars, driving around, whatever. General accompaniment for feeling shitty. The rest of the record though, and how it leads up to that, is great. There's the depression, also seen on “The Ghost of You Lingers,” whose repeating piano line provides the album's title. It's full of a lot of the studio tricks that made “Paper Tiger” such a jam. “Don't Make Me a Target” has the plea down, Daniel's voice stretching but never overstretching. Always just right. “Cherry Bomb” is one of the most insanely perfect pop songs I've heard in years, and still sounds fresh on my stereo today. “The Underdog,” which features assistance from Jon Brion, is a burst of excitement, maybe the brightest song in their catalog. Destined for mainstream movies, somewhere in the background. There's a Natural History cover, and I find that strange because I didn't know anyone knew about that band. I saw them open for someone, Ted Leo, maybe, years ago and here are Spoon covering one of their songs (“Don't You Evah”) and making it ten times better. The record never really falters. I used to think “Finer Feelings” was weird and just wanted to hurry up and get to “Black Like Me” but later I realized it's fucking amazing. You need to have that go-for-broke sort of song second to last, right before your balladesque send-off. It's that groovy Rob Pope bassline that really sells it for me, and again Britt Daniel returning to the pleading. Anyway, it's a masterpiece in that it feels tossed off almost. It's not at all, it just has the illusion of sounding loose while the band is in control of every little aspect.