1. Spoon – They Want My Soul

Armed with one of the most unique voices in music, Spoon, was looking forward with their follow-up to 2001’s Girls Can Tell. Many conceded the prowess of the band’s breakthrough record, but given their previous efforts’ “mediocrity”, most critics marked it as a pleasant fluke. In 2002, Spoon released, Kill The Moonlight, the I-told-you-so album for the few critics that saw Girls Can Tell for what it was – an introduction to a band’s golden era. That golden era continues this year with They Want My Soul.

Spoon has the unique ability to always sound familiar, without ever seeming stale. Despite the band’s constant evolution, each album from Girls Can Tell onward has found a way to mix controlled, precise movements with abstract, chaotic moments. It’s not controlled chaos. It’s chaos harmoniously sitting atop pop-perfect indie rock and roll.

Although They Want My Soul is less chaotic and noticeably tighter than it’s predecessor, Transference, it’s certainly no exception to the Spoon-perfected formula.

Ranging from radio-friendly pop of “Do You” to the kaleidoscopic collage of elaborate percussion and atmospheric organs and guitar effects “Outlier”, Spoon covers all of it’s bases. Jim Eno’s drums come across as crisp as ever, new-comer Alex Fischel adds a new element of chaos with his keyboard work, and Britt Daniel gets up to his usual mischief, whether it be perfectly-syncopated guitar work, fine sandpaper vocals or a twitchy, dissonant guitar solo. It’s all delectable.

That all being said, They Want My Soul isn’t a by-the book album for the band. Without losing their character, Spoon has once again disrupted our expectations of the band and left us satisfied. – Rondeau