Having seen Spoon a few times, I know how great they are live. Most recently I caught an outstanding Spoon show in their hometown of Austin playing to 20,000 or so adoring fans as the sun set on warm spring evening. Lead singer Britt Daniel spent little time talking and let the music set the atmosphere.
But how would Spoon translate in the direct sun of a 90-degree summer day playing before about 5,000 people in a stadium that was only about 20 percent full? I think Daniel knew this would be a challenging show. After all, how many Spoon shows do you think have been played at 2:45 in the afternoon in front of a crowd of people who probably didn’t know Spoon had been releasing quality albums since the mid-'90s? I guess not many.
But Daniel and the rest of the boys in Spoon were up to the challenge. Playing songs from every step of their decade plus career, Spoon kept the vibe fresh and the pace steady. Every couple songs or so, Daniel would stop and share a few words with the crowd to keep us engaged and let us know how happy he was to be there. Midway through the set, comedian David Cross was brought out on stage to “interpret the music for the hearing impaired.” Cross proceeded to prance around the stage for the next four minutes, loosely interpreting the lyrics and punctuating his appearance by showing everyone his ass. Britt also mentioned that it was bassist Joshua Zarbo’s last show until he rejoins the band again.
Overall, the show was fun and surprisingly light. Perfect for the new fans hearing Spoon for the first time on this sunny late summer day.