Monday, August 23, 2010

Spoon: Transference

Spoon's Transference dropped a week after Vampire Weekend's Contra, beginning the non-stop release of good albums from indie bands, which seemingly continued every Tuesday from January through June.  Merge Records labelmates Arcade Fire have clearly hit the big time, but if I had been betting which band would have flooded the mainstream first, I would've put my money on Spoon (especially after they were prominently featured on the soundtrack for Will Ferrell's movie Stranger than Fiction).

The dudes from Austin, TX, have been, according to Metacritic, the most consistent band in America in terms of putting out albums that have won critical acclaim (ahead of Sigur Ros and music critic darlings Animal Collective, among others).  They don't overwhelm you; their albums rarely produce that "Dear-God-where's-the-'repeat'-button" track that you might hear on a Sigur Ros album ("Saeglopur") or an Animal Collective record ("Reverend Green"). But Spoon has produced solid indie rock, album after album after album after album.

Transference, however, seems just a little -- just a smidgen-- lesser of an effort than previous releases.  Perhaps this can be explained by their stripped down sound on some tracks, or the fact that this is an album that seems somewhat devoid of singles.  Don't get me wrong, it's a good album, but I have a hard time choosing a favorite track.  I'm not sure what's going on in this video (he looks like an older Charlie Kelly), but this might be my favorite track:

Grade: B-
Blurb: This might be my least favorite record of their entire discography, but it's still a solid effort.

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