Spoon is like Wilco—an airtight band that shows incredible restraint in its playing, but is unafraid to explore the possibilities of the studio. The first four songs on Transference are arranged in a sort of obtuse tangle of repetitive guitar lines and Spoon frontman Britt Daniel’s internal thoughts—you’d be hard-pressed to find a chorus in there. The band’s seventh record once again blurs the lines between commercial pop and art rock. It’s not until halfway through the album, on the first single “Written in Reverse,” that a semblance of structure emerges. And even as the songs begin to make sense, there’s still a sense of incompleteness. The production throughout sounds as if the songs never made it past their muddied demo versions (a good thing). “Written in Reverse” is the punchiest of the bunch as guitars and piano bursts lunge beneath Daniel’s cranky rasp, while the song previous, “Who Makes Your Money,” warbles gently in a stream of keys and robotic snare taps. The contrasts are especially effective in setting up the standout track “Trouble Comes Running,” a straight-ahead rocker that could pass for an outtake from an early Joe Jackson record. To say Transference is a grower would be an understatement.