Preview: Spoon & Interpol’s Lights, Camera, Factions Tour at KEMBA Live!

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Tuesday Night Austin Alternative Rockers Spoon and companions of the label Matador Records Interpol will bring their long-awaited double billing Lights, Camera, Factions tour at KEMBA Live! outdoor scene.

While both outfits have been occasional companions to the festival circuit over the years, Lights, Camera, Faction finds them headlining together for the first time since 2005.

We connected earlier this month with Spoon’s keyboardist and guitarist Alex Fisher to give you a preview before tomorrow’s show.

Spoon supports their tenth and final studio album, Lucifer on the couchreleased in February.

The band, which also consists of Britt Daniel (vocals and guitar), Jim Eno (drums), Gerardo Larios (guitar and keyboards) and Ben Trokan (bass and keyboards), began work on the project in late 2018, but the final studio touches and its original early 2021 release date have been derailed by the pandemic. It became their fifth consecutive top forty on the Billboard Chart of 200 albums. The first single, “The Hardest Cut”, arrived last October and topped the Billboard Alternate airplay for adults. Two other singles from the album, “Wild” and “My Babe”, reached number three and number nine respectively. Considering the time it took to get Lucifer on the couch into the hands of their fans, the band can’t wait to finally bring it to the stage.

“[The album] still feels new to us, you know,” Fischel says. “We put so much work into it, so it still counts as new to me. [laughs]. Maybe not to the CEO of Spotify, but to us, [it does].”

Lucifer on the couch capture Spoon mostly playing the tracks live in the studio, which was an intentional departure from their 2017 set burning thoughts.

“For burning thoughts, a lot of it that we had sort of pieced together in the studio as we went along – kind of like a writing tool,” says Fischel. “This time around there were definitely a lot more songs to play before we hit the record.”

The band aimed to keep the cohesive buzz they experienced in the studio while building the songs intact for the listener, including some of the recorded banter that is often cut from the finished recording.

“Yeah, you can hear different takes in some songs — like on ‘Held’,” Fischel says. “In the beginning, you can hear our producer Mark [Rankin] undo different takes. We have registered burning thoughtsthe previous album, and turned on it a plot – I think more than other Spoon albums in the past. On our tour, [the songs] somehow took on new life. They were more fun to play a bit, those live versions. And so, we wanted to be able to try to do this for the new record and try to bring that energy to it – just to get a kick out of how things have evolved playing them. Granted, they always will, no matter how hard you work on them in the studio. They will morph and change as you play them in front of other people.

Lights, Camera, Factions will take Spoon and Interpol on the road after mid-September. Neo-pandemic tours seem to be in full swing with large crowds returning to venues with fervor, but there is still some COVID-related haze for bands to navigate as they head into longer stretches.

“There’s a new, different energy — or new found energy — to seeing music live after people haven’t been able to for so long,” says Fischel.

“I will say one of the weirdest things is that we did a tour at the end of 2021 and we played a show in Fargo,” Fischel continued. “We had a vaccination protocol where you had to show your vaccination card or a negative test, and the place made it clear that we were the ones who asked for this, and they had nothing to do with it. So that’s when we kind of said, ‘Huh. It’s a “two different worlds” kind of thing. [laughs] But since then, things have calmed down. The hardest thing is if someone on the tour gets COVID, you’re kinda screwed. Then you go through a strict lockdown procedure and that can really throw a wrench in things.

When they’re not filling venues with their own music, the band is looking for easy-to-hear stuff.

“When we come out of a tour, we really want peace [laughs]says Fischel. “So whatever peaceful — like, lots of soothing NPR voices. I went to see Angel Olsen on the tour they’re doing right now after our last stop, and that show was really good. And their new record [Big Time] is great too. The show was at the Ryman [Auditorium]and I thought that was really, really special.

Longtime Spoon fans with tour tickets in hand will be rewarded with vintage gear.

“There was a craze for the very first items in the catalog that took me by surprise,” says Fischel. “I’m really excited about it because I never thought we’d end up playing some of this stuff. We don’t play a plot of this one, but we rehearsed more of those songs at soundcheck and stuff like that, which was really cool.”

Spoon and Interpol present their joint “Lights, Camera, Factions” tour (presented by CD 92.9 FM) at KEMBA Live! Tuesday, August 30, with guests The water from your eyes. General admission tickets are $42.50 in advance, $45.00 the day of the show (plus taxes and fees). The show is outdoors and for all ages. Doors open at 6 a.m. pm


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