Screw Rock 'n' Roll head to head II: The Spoon vs The Game
aka How To Rob An Indie Blogger
The second, and quite possibly last, entry in an inconsistent series where Screw Rock 'n' Roll gives you the low down on two artists and awards some sort of title to one of them. Maybe.
Spoon and The Game. One's a bunch of indie kids from Texas and the other's a stripper who upset 50 Cent.
Spoon's "The Way We Get By" and The Game's "How We Do." Lifestyle songs for, respectively, indie rock and hip hop. The interesting thing is that while there are plenty of rap songs that aim to outline the activities and philophies that define the artist's particular lifestyle, "The Way We Get By" is a rare indie stab at the form. Most indie lifestyle tracks are concerned with narratives featuring people who live that lifestyle - vignettes rather than manifestos. But while that is common in indie rock, when rap takes the vignette approach, it nearly always produces something interesting.
Spoon: Third coast born that means they're Texas raised.
Game: Giving the west coast mouth to mouth.
Advantage: Does the west coast want The Game giving it mouth to mouth? For that matter, notice how 50 Cent, former Game mentor, and collaborator on this track, is never mentioned by anyone seeking to "bring New York back." Spoon take this one because the south is hot right now and because people in their hometown are probably happy to see them.
Spoon: "We get high in back seats of cars"; "You bought a new bag of pot, let's make a start."
Game: "Buck pass the blunt"; "Got weed on the ton"
Advantage: Tie. They might never do it together, but whether in Austin or Compton, Spoon and Game both love to toke. Do note, however, that Game's also partial to drinking ("coke and rum"), something the indie boys don't mention.
Spoon: "We break into mobile homes."
Game: "I was sellin' rocks when Master P was saying 'Uhhhh'."
Advantage: Game. Both acts target poor communities (trailer dwellers, crack addicts), but I have a feeling that there's more cash in dealing than robbing poor folks. In the words of Killa Cam, "If you steal, dont rob a store; Rob the stash house." Make your crime pay, Spoon.
Spoon: "Shake Appeal," "Some Weird Sin," "Down On The Street." Nothing but Stooges.
Game: "808 drums," "Get this motherfucker crunk."
Advantage: Spoon. I like 808 drums and getting any motherfucker crunk, but when it comes to artists Game can only come up with the guys he hangs out with (or did at the time). Sure, he mentions Master P but that's to establish a time period and to rhyme "unhhh" with "unhhhh" rather than a description of what's on the stereo. Lloyd Banks, Young Buck, Dr. Dre - Game, get yourself to a record store. You don't need to get your music direct from the artist. (Though of course, if we included Game's other tracks, he's the clear winner in this department. It doesn't show here, but Game's tastes are a little more varied than Stooges, Stooges, and oh, yes, Stooges.)
Spoon: "We go out in stormy weather"; "We rarely practice discern."
Game: Dude'll shoot you if you step on his shoes.
Advantage: Game. It'd be nice to think that Spoon are being understated, but, no, the extent of their recklessness consists of donning a raincoat.
Spoon: Like I said, it's all about the Stooges. They make love to "Some Weird Sin," they fall in love to "Down on the Street."
Game: "Banging with my hand up her dress like 'uhhhh'."
Advantage: Failing grades for both. Game's "unhhh" sounds like constipation, not titillation, and Spoon have some bizarre need for Iggy Pop to be present when conducting their romance.
I'm sorry, I've got to cop out and declare a tie here. As far as lifestyles go, How The Game Do and The Way Spoon Get By are basically identical. If I had to make a distinction, The Game's life should be more enjoyable, what with all the fancy cars, but Spoon actually sound like they're having more fun. Someone set up a playdate for these guys. I'm sure they'll have a blast.