Album review: Spoon’s Hot Thoughts a refreshing sound

Rock band Spoon released their ninth album, Hot Thoughts, on March 10. For a band with an excellent track record of releasing great music, I had no doubt that I would like their new album. To my surprise, however, the band incorporated some newer elements with Hot Thoughts. The album maintains the band’s signature sound and interesting lyrics, but also fuses more electronic influences into the mix. If I could sum up the sound into one word, I would call it “disco-rock,” and, to be honest, I love it.

Spoon formed in 1993 in Austin, Texas, and released their debut studio album, Telephono, in 1996. The band is well known for songs like “I Turn My Camera On”, “The Underdog”, and “The Way We Get By.” Spoon has performed on late-night talk shows, such as the Late Show with David Letterman, and Conan. They’ve also performed at music festivals like Bonnaroo, Pitchfork, and Coachella.
The title track and first song of the album, “Hot Thoughts,” sets the tone immediately for the rest of the album. As one might imagine, lead singer Britt Daniel sings, “Hot thoughts melt in my mind / Could be your accent mixing with mine / You got me uptight, twisting inside”.

My favorite track on the album is “First Caress.” The song is an upbeat fusion of piano riffs, guitars, and funky disco beats, with lyrics like “Angel, my love, my first caress / I come back and I find you’ve never changed / Then I think all the years from your love / I’ve been dispossessed.”

One of the slower songs in Hot Thoughts, “I Ain’t the One,” showcases Daniel’s raw vocals. The song speeds up midway, however, and builds into a more trance-y beat, as Daniel croons, “I ain’t the one, I ain’t the one / So now I’m leaving you all behind me.”

“Can I Sit Next to You” is a song with a playful beat and lively guitars, all in the fashion of Spoon’s style that we know and love. Daniel sings “Gonna walk a tight rope / Gonna get kicks every night / No one’s holding me back / No one’s changing my mind no more.”

Another notable track of the album is “Do I Have to Talk You Into it.” The song has a funky, retro vibe and dynamic instrumentals with lyrics like “Do I have to talk you into it? / Do I have to make sense of it? / They say I better seal you up in wax / So that you’re never gonna bite me back.”

As a whole, Hot Thoughts is a refreshing sound as compared to other albums that Spoon has put out. Longtime fans will likely be pleasantly surprised by what the album has to offer, but, at the same time, will appreciate the musical styles that the band has held onto. I always love when bands experiment with new sounds and it seems to be working wonderfully for Spoon.

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