Don't worry; the usually riff-heavy Austinites still whip out ample axe magic when it's called for, but a fresh approach to song construction has yielded classic hooky gems for songwriter Britt Daniel and company. The key, he explains, was impulse. "Whatever I came up with right away, I turned into a song. I would write and not edit myself, and I tried to get a bunch of songs down quickly and in a really concentrated way. I'd work on 15 different songs at the same time." (You crazy multi-tasker, you!)
If it seems that Mr. Daniel and longtime drum buddy Jim Eno have accomplished an amazing feat in just pooping out golden eggs, it's because they have. Even more amazing is the fact that they've decided to leave the eggs alone. "A lot of times, the more spare a song is, the more it can work," Daniel explains. "Some of my favorite singles are like Prince's 'Kiss'; it's stripped; it's perfect pop." Daniel, who is happiest about the varied nature of his new canon of hits, fondly recalls his creative process with Eno. "We just don't talk. We kind of bubble under, get in a fist-fight or two, and everything's fine."
Somewhere between golden egg-laying and fist-fighting, Daniel discovered the joys of Writing On The Piano and churned out "Small Stakes," Kiss The Moonlight's introductory punch-in-the-face and standout sexy jam. It's also an ode to Austin of sorts, a city which Daniel clearly loves in a familial way: with a tinge of distaste. "It's all about being happy with people and places under the radar," he explains, "which is both a good and a bad thing. You don't have to feel like you're a playa, you can feel great and be yourself, but then again, it can limit your drive sometimes." With constant progression like this, Spoon had better be ready to raise the stakes.