Bitch Magnet exploded out of Oberlin College in 1986, three (sometimes four) young men obsessed with Big Black's noise, King Crimson's precision and Scrabble-geek song titles like "Mesentery." This set collects all three records and appends unreleased tracks and singles. Their half-formed debut EP is redeemed by a previously unreleased follow-up session. The LPs Ben Hur and Umber still stun, with Sooyoung Park's mumble parrying Jon Fine's alternately bulldozing and delicate guitar and Orestes Morfin's AP-calculus drumming. One reason you see so many grad-student types at metal shows these days: Indie rock has largely abandoned music this heavy.
Listen to "Mesentery":
• Photos: Random Notes