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Electrically Possessed; Switched On, Vol. 4
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Back in 2005 there was a common consensus from critics and fans upon hearing Stereolab's announcement that they were going on hiatus: perhaps it was the right thing for the postmodernist iconoclasts to do. Their decision possibly came as a result of the lukewarm responses to their recorded output after reaching a creative zenith with Dots & Loops, and almost certainly out of continued grief following the death of their beloved Mary Hansen, who had contributed so much to the groop's dynamic sound since joining for their second album Transient Random-Noise Bursts With Announcements. But they were never a band that liked to rest on their laurels, and continued to release albums long after the split.
In his book Retromania, writer (and occasional Pitchfork contributor) Simon Reynolds called Stereolab "the ultimate record-collection rockers" to describe their crate-digging, obscurantist aesthetic. But the label also applies to the group's approach to releasing its own music. Stereolab's discography is littered with singles, limited-release EPs, and compilation appearances--manna for their fellow vinyl junkies.
Just months after the release of their 1992 debut full-length, Peng!, Stereolab were already collecting odds and ends, collecting early 7-inches and EPs for their Switched On compilation. Over the next six years, the eclectic avant-pop band would put out two more highly-regarded and beloved additions to their Switched On series, proving that they were utterly incapable of putting out bad music during the '90s.
Electrically Possessed [Switched On Volume 4], picks up from where 1998's Aluminum Tunes [Switched On Volume 3] left off.