In November 2019, Stereolab complete their year-long seven album reissue campaign with the release of 2001's Sound-Dust and 2004's Margerine Eclipse as expanded and remastered editions on vinyl via Warp Records and the band's own Duophonic UHF Disks. As with May's reissues of Transient Random Noise-Bursts With Announcements and Mars Audiac Quintet, and September's reissues of Emperor Tomato Ketchup, Dots and Loops, andCobra and Phases Group Play Voltage in the Milky Night, each album in November's final batch has been remastered from the original 1/2" tapes by Bo Kondren at Calyx Mastering and overseen by Tim Gane. Bonus material will include unreleased demos and tracks from rare tour singles.
Stereolab's first full-length recording without guitarist/vocalist Mary Hansen, who died in a tragic accident in December of 2002, Margerine Eclipse finds the band soldiering on in admirable fashion. Essentially picking up where they left off on 2001's Sound-Dust, the group continues to employ their trademark blend of vintage keyboards, airy French/English vocals, and frothy lounge-meets-electronica pop sensibilities. That's not to say that there absolutely no new developments; one can hear the occasional dash of hip-hop rhythm ("La Demeure"), Autechre-like laptop glitch-pop ("Vonal Declosion"), and even a bit of disco (at the end of album-closer "Dear Marge") amid the familiarly odd time signatures, quirky socio-political lyrical observations, and postmodern retro-futurism.
Most importantly, though, Stereolab's finely tuned knack for interesting arrangements, arresting timbres, and modestly elegant melodies remains unsullied.