They've settled long ago into their own version of a locked groove, so it's pointless to turn to Stereolab albums for groundbreaking shifts in songwriting approaches or even more than a few new ideas. Instead, fans are reduced to following changes in production like trainspotters. Unfortunately, Stereolab have taken the novelty out of that, too. Sound-Dust, like the past few 'Lab discs, was recorded in Chicago with John McEntire and Jim O'Rourke. While McEntire adds typical Tortoise sterility to the group's soft rock sound, O'Rourke actually breaks the mould slightly, abstractly piecing together bits of songs but also creating a warm, cozy feel within the tracks. It's hardly a rewriting of the genetic code, but with Stereolab, it's as close as you're likely to get.