Last Thursday night we squeezed into 330 Ritch to see Spoon, one of our favorite bands of all time. We'd just helped celebrate former SFist Eve's birthday at Tempest Bar and picked up our friend after her fire dancing class at Temple of Poi, and thankfully got to the venue just as Spoon hit the stage. Spoon were the consummate professionals as always, delivering a tight set without much banter or bullshit. We love them for playing a diverse set of songs from across their many releases. The opening riff of "Fitted Shirt" gave us a rush of excitement and nostalgia especially; such a great song about such an unlikely subject. The title of Spoon's new record has us puzzled, and hearing Britt's pronounce it like machine gun fire - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga - was interesting to hear, but, yeah, we still don't get it. Speaking of Spoon, we're headed to their (and our) old hometown of Austin this week for a sunny vacation. The bad news is that we picked a week with no less than four shows that we're crushed to miss: Chris Garneau at the Hemlock tonight, Arcade Fire at the Greek on Friday and Saturday, Laura Veirs at Cafe Du Nord on Tuesday and Client at Amoeba on Wednesday. Watch Chris Garneau's video for "Relief", off of Music For Tourists and then read this week's show recommendations below.

Tonight there's that must-see show at the Hemlock with Chris Garneau, Liam Carey and Laura Weinbach. As you saw from the video, singer-songwriter Garneau sings torch songs with a reserved passion (think Sufjan Stevens' quiet voice). This is a show we're dying to see, but we're on vacation in Austin, remember! Also tonight, our friends at The Bay Bridged present Social Studies, Tempo No Tempo and The Lovely Public at Rickshaw Stop. Popscene presents a record release party for the locals in Scissors For Lefty and Brakes Brakes Brakes at 330 Ritch. There's a note on the website that tells us Brakes Brakes Brakes was formerly known as The Brakes, and this just makes us laugh. Are there any "The" names that haven't been taken? The Bougainvilleas? The Dodecahedrons?