CD Review 

Various Artists
DFA Compilation #2
(Death From Above Records)
****

After years of DFA's EPs and singles being scattered all around your room and switching out their 7" nine times for an acceptable party-length listen, the label has decided to help you tidy up and crammed everything you could ever dream of into a three-disc set. Cause for piercing collective shrieks from modern electronic music lovers everywhere, this set has not only 18 previously released singles from nine prime DFA artists, but an entire CD of infallible new mixes by Tim Sweeney and Tim Goldsworthy. The lineup may initially seem like an ataxia of styles--the ambient noise of Black Dice wedged between the dance-punk of Pixelton and J.O.Y. --but in practice proves itself a skillfully compiled continuum of dance spirit. For the casual electronic dabbler this compilation is a must for coke parties; for the electronically obsessed of us, this is the contemporary pillar of your collection. JENNA ROADMAN

BLACKOUTS
History In Reverse
(K Records)
***1/2

The spectre of the Blackouts has cast a pale, slender shadow over Seattle's rock history--a bizarre and important footnote that helps to fill in some of the gaping holes in that city's unlikely musical history. The first time I heard the band's legendary Men In Motion EP--a four song 12" that was the most substantial release they mustered in the city--as a PiL-fixated teenager, I was astonished to find a regional anomaly to parallel the sinister sounds of post-punk Europe, rivaling that of their trans-Atlantic peers. Over the course of a six-year history ('79-'85) and pitifully short discography, the Blackouts beautifully married the angular clang of their British counterparts with the familiar overcast murk of the Pacific Northwest--a past justly chronicled in K's comprehensive re-issue History In Reverse. And though it would be easy to overlook yet another post-punk reissue in this already crowded market, the sheer quality of the material begs for further exposure. This is your cup of tea. ZAC PENNINGTON

Anomoanon
Joji
(Temporary Residence)
***

Classic rock is a guilty pleasure for a lot of people--an undeniably powerful, deeply ingrained force--and that's why atavistic throwback records like Joji feel so good so fast. I can't hum half the choruses on this CD yet, but I already love it after 2.5 listens. It comes with a big backlog of classic rock history, ghosts of 30-year-old riffs and bass lines you've heard on KGON for years. On songs like "After Than Before" and "Nowhere," Ned Oldham is séancing the spirits of Led Zeppelin's best lacy delicate/orc stomp dynamic and born-again-era Dylan's whiskery, glare-eyed funk. Ned pulls the indie rock needle and thread through a hole it doesn't often go through--blues rock--and knits a warm, already-broken-in sweater you feel like you've had all your life. ADAM GNADE

**** Injera
*** Nan
** Tortilla
* White Bread

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