Spoon The Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto ON, June 20

Spoon The Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto ON, June 20
Photo: Shane Parent
The announcement that Spoon would play a (no longer) secret show at the Horseshoe Tavern was a delicious proposition made tastier in execution. On a stage too small for their stature now — the band will headline Yonge-Dundas Square on Saturday (June 21) — but powerfully intimate, Spoon won over a tired crowd as they blazed through a set of new songs and catalogue hits. They opened with "Knock Knock Knock" and "Rent I Pay," two songs from their forthcoming They Want My Soul, and while they went over well, the crowd was slow to catch up to Britt Daniel's swaggering energy and newcomer Alex Fischel's guitar histrionics.

That changed with "Don't You Evah" and especially "Small Stakes," which lifted the set and provided context for the crowd to dance enthusiastically to "I Turn My Camera On," on which drummer Jim Eno provided a stunning little fill and Daniel yelled into the mic: "Alright Jim!" It was a moment that summed up the night, as the band exchanged grinning glances throughout the set, clearly happy to be on stage. Highlight "Don't Make Me a Target" preceded excellent new tune "Rainy Taxi," "Got Nuffin" and "Black Like Me."

They left the stage, already well over the half-hour set length they were allotted, but returned for an authentic encore — the mics had actually already been unplugged — starting with "Beast and Dragon, Adored." Their stunning, horn-laden closer "The Underdog" still seemed like a fitting final statement delivered by Spoon, even if they're currently poised to take over the world.