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Musical Pairings: Spoon – Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (paired w/ seared flank steak and baby artichoke and potato hash)

Flank steak with baby artichoke and potato hash. I think you’ll probably agree that this is a hearty, muscular dish. And it is also rustic and somewhat unique. It is an excellent dish to center a lively conversation. And although our recipe is for two, it would be extremely easy to just increase the portions and make it for a whole group of people. As a result, this dish requires an equally muscular, unique Musical Pairing that would work well whether you are enjoying a lively meal for two or a meal for ten. Spoon’s Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga is therefore the ideal choice. Like all Spoon albums, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, demonstrates a certain muscular swagger that just sounds like good old rock n’ roll. But, as the unconventionally weird title seems to imply, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga is much more complex than the label “good old rock n’ roll” would suggest.

The album opens with “Don’t Make Me A Target,” which is the most simple and straightforward rock song on the album, and is also Spoon’s “protest” song directed squarely at George W. Bush: “here comes the man from the star / we don’t know why he goes so far” and “clubs and sticks and bats and balls / for nuclear dicks with dialect drawls.” But if you were to expect the rest of the album to be as straightforward, the second track, “The Ghost of You Lingers,” would quickly dispel any such idea with its unconventional structure, ghostly vocals and the fact that the primary instrumentation driving the track forward is a short, repetitive piano tune. From this point out, even traditional song structures and basic melodies are accentuated by knob-twiddling and sonic experimentation. Nonetheless, despite the studio trickery, the band doesn’t stray from making great pop songs, and some of their best pop cuts to date dominate the phenomenal, middle-stretch of the album from “You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb” through “The Underdog.” There isn’t a dull moment on Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (though I’d argue that “The Ghost of You Still Lingers” is the least essential track on the album), and the album comes to a strong close with the final three tracks: “My Little Japanese Suitcase,” “Finer Feelings” and “Black Like Me.” As an interesting side note, the vinyl version of the album doesn’t feature a run-out groove on side two, and instead continuously loops a short bit of music endlessly (I think this is staggeringly awesome, personally).

Spoon – Don’t You Evah

Spoon – I Summon You (Cool) version from Get Nice!

Buy Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga from Insound (as always I recommend the vinyl version – and in this case you’ll get to hear the continuous loop if you do). Head back to eating/SF to read the recipe for the seared flank steak with baby artichoke and potato hash.

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