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Preview: Spoon 

Noah Bonaparte Pais on the indie rock band's performance at the Civic Theatre

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Photo by Autumn de Wilde

Longtime Spoon fans could be forgiven for wondering if the band's seventh LP, 2010's Transference (Merge), was a departure from which it wouldn't return. The album represented a culmination and a commencement for the Austin, Texas, quartet: It's both the band's most successful and inscrutable release, moving more than 50,000 units in its initial week with zero adherence to verse-chorus-bridge templates. Sounds flit in and out of the mix, colliding and bouncing off one another like agitated cells under a microscope; ephemeral demos interrupt blurred-line guitar and piano textures; songs stretch around corners and drop off cliffs. As new directions go, it isn't quite Radiohead's Kid A, but it's close. For a band at the top of the world, equally beloved by indie-rock snobs and corporate music supervisors, it was the most surprising move in a career full of unseen turns. Like James Murphy saying hello/goodbye over a sinewy beat and smeared keys, closer "Nobody Gets Me But You" was an affectionate, disaffected aloha. In the four years since, singer/songwriter Britt Daniel formed a new band, Divine Fits, with fellow hoarse-man Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade, Handsome Furs), and drummer/producer Jim Eno founded Public Hi-Fi Records and helmed albums for Heartless Bastards, Alejandro Escovedo, Black Joe Lewis and others. Spoon was put in a drawer. That drawer cracked last year, with news of new recordings and song titles, and flew open in March, with a 30-second YouTube clip of music registering as electronic interference and a tweet that read, simply, "One week away from a finished album." No rush. Tickets $25.


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