Three Spoons @ Fonda
Last week Spoon sold out a three-night stand at the Fonda. As per tradition, Losanjealous turned out to see what the fuss was about.
Monday, 9.10.07: Jon
My girl insisted. We had just seen Spoon about a month earlier at a special show on a warehouse stage, downtown Los Angeles. She stole a beer from the drummer which led to a conversation. She was hooked and I was impressed. The LA show had vindicated what I had learned about two years ago after discovering Gimme Fiction and Girls Can Tell and more recently the once leaked, but now fair game, GaGaGaGaGa.
Yep. A Monday show in LA. But then we found out about Keepon. The show was billed as Spoon with special guest Keepon, which is a tiny little yellow Japanese robot designed to perform emotive and attentive exchange with humans. It is the star of the their new video for the new single”Don’t You Evah”, which can be seen on YouTube. The video featured Hideki Kozima, the psychologist who designed and built Keepon for his research with autistic children. Keepon gained cult like popularity on YouTube in April utilizing “I Turn My Camera On” as its background music.
So this was a cool twist. But the fact that Kool Keith was not named as the opener on the websites we looked into was a stinger. We missed most of it due to this clerical error.
The publisher of WIRED introduced the show and the creator of Wikipedia spoke to the half-filled venue. Then Spoon made me realize why I was there in the first place. “Don’t You Evah” was played second and brought all of the jumpiness from the album version. The venue was full by the end of this happy diddy. They kept pumping out 4 minute jams and the band was mellow, but determined to nail each song. I’m pretty sure Britt Daniel doesn’t ever miss a beat. He has an amazing music mind. I was content the entire show with everything the band was doing, but this is not dance music to the highest degree quite yet. A lackluster “I Turn My Camera On” let me realize how impressed all of the sweat the band had poured out in the un-airconditioned warehouse a month ago. But tonight they proved themselves with a short powerful set that included stellar versions of “The Delicate Place” and “Don’t Make Me A Target” and everyone’s favorite “My Mathematical Mind.”
I was not wired, but Spoon brought exactly what a Monday night in Los Angeles needed. My only wonders were if my buddies attending the next 2 nights would see the same “higher energy” songs in their sets and what the next convenient circumstance would be for me to see how Spoon is musically growing.
Tuesday, 9.11.07: Greg
I’m a middle child, so I didn’t really care that I only saw night two of a three-night stand.
That’s actually a bogus statement on all counts. Technically I’m an only child (I have a half brother who’s way younger), and I’d rather see the first or last of a three-night stand if I had to pick just one. Alas, Spoon is Spoon, and they rarely disappoint. The crowd was exactly what you would expect for a show like this. Crap. My roommate and a few people around us were the only ones dancing, and that was just fine by us. One lovely lady pointed out to us that “Small Stakes” sounded like “We Got the Beat” by the Go-Go’s. We all bust out into hysterics on that one. Britt Daniel did his best with what he had to work with, and I’m sincerely thankful for that. It’s hard to be a rockstar. Especially when your band comes to L.A. I’m not a rockstar, I just love rock, but if my band were to sell out three shows at the Fonda, I’d be super stoked and couldn’t wait to start shredding. I would not, however, expect to see people just going through the motions. People doing what they think they’re supposed to do at a rock show.
That’s what happened on Tuesday. Sad, but true. Expected? Most definitely. My griping aside, I did have a great time. I love the Fonda. It’s like a mini-Wiltern to me. The outside patio is just awesome, and you really don’t have to miss anything due to the screen/speaker setup outside. Spoon played a great set, which included a lot of new stuff mixed with older fare. They’re a band that I think is really doing well by me. They’re staying consistent without really bogging themselves down too much. Staying true to themselves without completely selling out. Britt Daniel is a helluva front man, and I really feel like he can take this band to newer and higher levels. He has a certain Springsteen quality in his timing. It’d be amazing to see them add more pieces. Not just the three horns they brought out for the tunes off Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga. They added something, but left me wanting more, hence my realization of their potential.
Wednesday, 9.12.07: Ryan
This time I got the ewoks, let’s face it.
Actually the show was good, the band very tight, the brass spot-on and the crowd largely into it by L. A. standards. I enjoyed the hell out of pumping my fist to the Cherry Bomb. I have never been a fan of the camera song, call me crazy. I was bummed they played it, because it cost me $7 in beer plus a wait in line (Victor I swear to god your chart is coming). I’m going to just let it all out now, though, since I got the Return of the Jedi of this trilogy: I’m left wanting more. Daniel is the only person on stage with any presence at all. Songs like ’The Ghost of You Lingers’ are atmospheric enough to invoke some sort of radiohead transcendence if presented correctly – something I was begging for – unfortunately that just didn’t happen.
They were very solid. Loud. Robust. Were I to compare their performance to an actual spoon that I might use in my kitchen, I would make them Tablespoon. Big, beefy, gets the job done. Nothing overly fancy, but you can always rely on it.
Image credits: Spoon Rocks Fonda Amazing Cell Phone Photo By Losanjealous Ryan. Second photo, also by Losanjealous Ryan. Third photo by somebody else.