Fridge Early Output 1996 -€“ 1998

That this trio of London kids were still in high school and essentially just dicking around with a cassette eight-track when Trevor Jackson began releasing their explosively imaginative post-rock experiments on his Output label is humbling. It's well known that they've gone on to glory with Four Tet and Adem, and a reunion in 2007 that produced new album Sun whetted the appetite for more. Culled from sessions that yielded two full-lengths and a handful of singles comes this blend of Tortoise-esque musculature with swatches of cheap electronics and cheeky melodies for drapery. Sam Jefffers' unschooled and deeply intuitive drumming was the loose backbone that let Adem Ilhan and Kieran Hebden drop noise guitar and droning keyboards wherever their hearts desired. Standouts like the faux-dance, groovy "Lojen," the Mogwai-winking "Swerve and Spin" and patient 808 epic "Anglepoised" prove the breadth of ideas and influences that continue to serve these gentlemen today. (Temporary Residence)