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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best sounding band you've never heard of., 16 Jan 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: A Series Of Sneaks (Audio CD)
A US indie rock band but don't let that put you off. A Series of Sneaks is is actually Spoon's second album. Released for the first time in the UK and Europe, this is the Texan trios 1998 album and features three full-length songs not included on the US version: "Revenge," "Shake It Off," and "I Could Be Underground." Originally released on the Elektra label, A Series of Sneaks came out to the best reviews of the band's career, then Elektra bizarrely dumped the band. This is still an excellent album and has a slightly more heavier sound than their latest album Girls Can Tell (another 5-star record and well worth buying). Who do they sound like? Forget bands like Tram and Guided by Voices. If you like Pavement, Stephen Malkmus or Cake then you might find this suits you taste. Buy it. Try it. Enjoy it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Odd added tracks..., 22 April 2009
By 
Sick Mouthy (Exeter, Devon) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Series of Sneaks (Audio CD)
A Series Of Sneaks is probably my favourite Spoon album, and considering how much I love Gimme Fiction, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, and Kill The Moonlight, that's pretty high praise.

On their debut album, Telephono, Spoon basically sounded like a cross between Wire and Pixies, with an adenoidal Texan singing. It was alright, but the Soft Effects EP a year later started throwing in what makes Spoon genius; killer riffs and rhythms, and hook after hook after hook, meaning it didn't sound so much like Wire or Pixies, but rather it sounded like Spoon.

Spoon aren't your common-or-garden indie band, you see; they're more like The Neptunes or Can in that it's all about minimalism, grooves, unexpected turns, and changing-but-never-changing riffs, except instead of hip-hop or krautrock they play indie garage rock. Simple.

A Series Of Sneaks is a series of short, sharp songs played on guitar, bass, and drums, and then embellished with radio noise, weird keyboard textures, and a host of other effects, including Britt Daniel's compelling whoops of "c'mon" and "oh yeah" and so on, which may seem cheesy when written down but when yelped by Daniel somehow become the very platonic essence of why rock n roll is fun.

Every track has multiple sonic and structural delights, from the weird filigree around the edges of Utilitarian, the two-kit drum fills of Reservations, the razor stop-start riffs of Car Radio, the weird electric drones of Metal Detektor, and the handclaps of No You're Not. Advance Cassette is the closest thing to a ballad here, only it's a; not a ballad at all, and b; about losing an advance cassette of your favourite band. Somehow, it's more melancholy than most bands' heartfelt paeans to lost lovers.

This edition of ASOS oddly appends the single The Agony Of Laffitte and it's b-side, Laffitte Don't Fail Me Now - oddly, because Laffitte was the A&R man responsible for signing Spoon to Electra for this album, and also responsible for them being majorly messed about by the major label; the two songs, while melodically sweet, are not very nice at all about Mr. Laffitte...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sneakin', 22 Jan 2006
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: A Series Of Sneaks (Audio CD)
Imagine the love child of Pavement and the Pixies, finding their own musical path through the world of indie rock. That's the general feel that Spoon gives off in "A Series of Sneaks," the band's major label debut. It's jagged and darkly fun, carefully crafted while seeming effortless.
It opens with the jagged guitar spikes and shivery grooves of "Utilitarian," a rocker than grabs you by the hair and pulls you in. It sets the tone for much of the album, where many songs are a blend of angry and beautiful, such as the ominous "The Minor Tough," which sounds like a song from a Raymond Chandler musical.
"A Series of Sneaks" had a rollercoaster history -- the 1998 release was practically lost after Elektra ditched the band, but was reappeared on an indie label, then on Merge. Don't underestimate any band -- or any scorned album -- that comes back despite the odds, as Spoon did. Makes you wonder if Elektra is sorry now.
If "Series of Sneaks" has any flaw at all, it is that the album has a rather jagged feel. Yes, Spoon's music always sounds that way, but the songs feel like brief bursts of raw guitar rock. It's a bit frustrating to wonder if this album could have been even better, but as "Series of Sneaks" progresses, the indie fun takes over and you just sit back and enjoy.
Britt Daniel is obviously an underrated guitar genius, twisting his guitar into short, taut blasts; around him, we get the ever-changing duet of Joshua Zarbo's bass and Jim Eno's tight drums, complementing Daniel's guitar work. They dip into assorted styles -- blues, punk -- and blend them into the stripped-down sound.
Daniel's voice is just as versatile as his guitar -- he can let rip with raw howls, or downplay his voice to a thin waver. And the songwriting is oblique at best, but it really doesn't matter -- at times you can't understand what Daniel is singing about (is "Car Radio" about driving, or touring as a rock band?), but the vibe of it comes through loud and clear.
Spoon lets their raw musical power out in "A Series of Sneaks." This underrated rough gem is short, clocking in at only over half an hour, but it's an half-hour to treasure.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great album, 22 April 2009
By 
Sick Mouthy (Exeter, Devon) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: A Series Of Sneaks (Audio CD)
A Series Of Sneaks is probably my favourite Spoon album, and considering how much I love Gimme Fiction, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, and Kill The Moonlight, that's pretty high praise.

On their debut album, Telephono, Spoon basically sounded like a cross between Wire and Pixies, with an adenoidal Texan singing. It was alright, but the Soft Effects EP a year later started throwing in what makes Spoon genius; killer riffs and rhythms, and hook after hook after hook, meaning it didn't sound so much like Wire or Pixies, but rather it sounded like Spoon.

Spoon aren't your common-or-garden indie band, you see; they're more like The Neptunes or Can in that it's all about minimalism, grooves, unexpected turns, and changing-but-never-changing riffs, except instead of hip-hop or krautrock they play indie garage rock. Simple.

A Series Of Sneaks is a series of short, sharp songs played on guitar, bass, and drums, and then embellished with radio noise, weird keyboard textures, and a host of other effects, including Britt Daniel's compelling whoops of "c'mon" and "oh yeah" and so on, which may seem cheesy when written down but when yelped by Daniel somehow become the very platonic essence of why rock n roll is fun.

Every track has multiple sonic and structural delights, from the weird filigree around the edges of Utilitarian, the two-kit drum fills of Reservations, the razor stop-start riffs of Car Radio, the weird electric drones of Metal Detektor, and the handclaps of No You're Not. Advance Cassette is the closest thing to a ballad here, only it's a; not a ballad at all, and b; about losing an advance cassette of your favourite band. Somehow, it's more melancholy than most bands' heartfelt paeans to lost lovers.

This version appends 3 b-sides to the originally 14-track album, but Revenge, Shake It Off, and I Could Be Underground are all of excellent quality and fit in stylistically, so you'd never think they shouldn't be there.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome album, 22 April 2009
By 
Sick Mouthy (Exeter, Devon) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Series of Sneaks (Audio CD)
A Series Of Sneaks is probably my favourite Spoon album, and considering how much I love Gimme Fiction, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, and Kill The Moonlight, that's pretty high praise.

On their debut album, Telephono, Spoon basically sounded like a cross between Wire and Pixies, with an adenoidal Texan singing. It was alright, but the Soft Effects EP a year later started throwing in what makes Spoon genius; killer riffs and rhythms, and hook after hook after hook, meaning it didn't sound so much like Wire or Pixies, but rather it sounded like Spoon.

Spoon aren't your common-or-garden indie band, you see; they're more like The Neptunes or Can in that it's all about minimalism, grooves, unexpected turns, and changing-but-never-changing riffs, except instead of hip-hop or krautrock they play indie garage rock. Simple.

A Series Of Sneaks is a series of short, sharp songs played on guitar, bass, and drums, and then embellished with radio noise, weird keyboard textures, and a host of other effects, including Britt Daniel's compelling whoops of "c'mon" and "oh yeah" and so on, which may seem cheesy when written down but when yelped by Daniel somehow become the very platonic essence of why rock n roll is fun.

Every track has multiple sonic and structural delights, from the weird filigree around the edges of Utilitarian, the two-kit drum fills of Reservations, the razor stop-start riffs of Car Radio, the weird electric drones of Metal Detektor, and the handclaps of No You're Not. Advance Cassette is the closest thing to a ballad here, only it's a; not a ballad at all, and b; about losing an advance cassette of your favourite band. Somehow, it's more melancholy than most bands' heartfelt paeans to lost lovers.
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Series Of Sneaks, A [JP-Import]
Series Of Sneaks, A [JP-Import] by Spoon (Audio CD - 1998)
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