Words by Veronica Silva

Stereolab is a formidable British based band, formed in 1990, currently on hiatus (as of April 2009). Not Music, the remembered stepchild of 2008’s Chemical Chords, is an extremely playful album that consists of a multitude of synthesizer driven intricacies that impressed this first time listener.

“Everybody’s Weird Except Me” is the charming opening track on Not Music. It showcases hypnotic French-born lead vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist, Sadier’s removed alto tone that consistently compliments this band’s most memorable tracks. Stereolab continuously creates melodic harmonies enlisting archetypal analog instruments ranging from the Moog synthesizer to Vox organs to just good ‘old fashion horns. “Equivalences” lacks Sadier’s vocals but makes up for this loss in its tensed composition.

Stereolab’s two mainstays, Tim Gane and Laetitia Sadier, met at one of Tim’s earlier gigs with the London-based band McCarthy in the late 80s. This band deserves some serious attention as their body of work is perhaps even more notable than their tabloid poised band history which incorporates everything from divorce to death.

It is with great pleasure that I enthusiastically endorse Stereolab’s twelfth album Not Music. “Pop Molecules” may be a personal favorite, however, this album, in its entirety is one you should definitely not “sleep on”. Considering their hiatus is about a year and 7 months in, I think we have some time to really do our homework and acquaint ourselves with this band, so often characterized by what critics perceive Marxist political messages, just in time for a reunion and, perhaps naively, a full economic recovery.

“Not Music”
Drag City Records
© November 16th, 2010



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