Published Mar 01, 2006Fab Four Suture is a collection of 12 Stereolab songs released over the course of six limited edition seven-inch singles. The first three "Kyberneticka Babicka, "Plastic Mile and "Interlock were released in September 2005 and promptly sold out. The next three "Whisper Pitch, "Excursions into Oh, A-Oh and "Eye of the Volcano will come out the same day as the CD that collects them all into one handy package. Tim Gane and company have always preserved a sense of unity on their albums, leaving their more adventurous side for their singles. And so a collection like this is most revealing for the telltale signs of an all-too-consistent band branching out. Do they? In small parts, yes. The differences here are subtle, and most often happen in the rhythm section: "Kyberneticka Babicka Part 1 makes good use of the T-Rex shuffle; and halfway though "Interlock, angular disco-punk infiltrates the bass and drums. These singles are more inclined to dance rather than noodle. Though, Ganes signature guitars, Sadiers unmistakable voice and the subversive cooing of her lyrics, and all those bubbling synths still make up the central part of the mix, and so the Lab sound isnt about to undergo any stark transformations. As for the songs themselves, fans wont be disappointed, but theyll by no means be surprised either.
Why the decision to release these singles as a compilation? Gane: Well, it wasnt a decision so much on my part. Our label Elektra had gone belly up, so we werent too much in an album mood. Theres a freedom in trying out new ideas with no obligation to something longer. I think about the finished form a lot when recording, whether it will come out on single or be downloadable. Then the label approached us about putting it all together in one package.
What do you make of the criticism that the Stereolab sound never changes? Yes, I hear that, but, obviously, I never think Im going into the studio to record the same songs over and over again. I think of Woody Allen and his movies and how theyre all a variation on the same theme, each one is pretty similar to the next like hes exploring something. I think we have that kind of dynamic to the band, where were interested in exploring certain ideas more than others. Also, most people have trouble recognising our music when its instrumental, but once Laetitia starts singing, shes the Stereolab stamp. Her voice is very distinctive. (Too Pure)