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LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Time now for some music. As a teenager in the '80s, the Texas musician Britt Daniel was not at home in his hometown. He was a punk rock kid in a rural, conservative place.

BRITT DANIEL: You could be out anywhere in Temple - you can go to the mall, you can go to Taco Bell and you can just expect to be harassed.

WERTHEIMER: Harassed for his style, which he describes as...

DANIEL: What my, you know, impression of what new wave was in high school, which oddly enough included Bolo ties.

WERTHEIMER: And so he did what so many nonconformists do, he moved an our south to Austin, Texas. And today, he is the lead singer of one of the city's biggest bands. They're called Spoon and they have a new record out this week.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "RAINY TAXI")

SPOON: (Singing) You catch everything I never could. You believed when I gave up for good.

WERTHEIMER: Spoon formed more than 20 years ago and quickly put out several popular CDs. Then four years ago, the band took an extended, open-ended break.

DANIEL: It kind of got a little tense at the end. I think we had been going at it real long and hard for a long time.

WERTHEIMER: And so when the band finally reconvened, they were hoping to rekindle the old magic. But there were some bad omens. The band holed up in a remote studio in rural upstate New York. The weather was so bad, some nights they couldn't go out.

DANIEL: Everything was snowed over - the streets and everything. And there was a streak of blood down the street leading up to the studio.

WERTHEIMER: OK, piles of snow, streaks of blood. And then the police came knocking to ask about the mental state of a nearby resident - it was like a scary movie.

DANIEL: It was. It was a bit horror story, right?

WERTHEIMER: And Daniel says you can hear that in this track.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK")

SPOON: (Singing) Every day I hear knock, knock, knock, I know that it's you.

WERTHEIMER: Despite their strange experience, Daniel says it was great to be back with the band.

DANIEL: It was more fun than ever really.

WERTHEIMER: He remembers a moment the band shared after recording this track.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPOON SONG, "RENT I PAY")

DANIEL: Listening back to it, it just kind of struck everybody, like, this is working. This is amazing. You just get that feeling, you know, like, it's unquestionable. That was a great feeling.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "RENT I PAY")

SPOON: (Singing) I've been losing sleep, just nodding sleep, that I wish I loathed.

WERTHEIMER: The album is called "They Want My Soul," which sounds angry. But, says Daniel, hey...

DANIEL: Well, every now and then you've got to let off some steam.

WERTHEIMER: Spoon's new record comes out this week.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "RENT I PAY")

SPOON: (Singing) And that's the rent I'm paying.

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