You Am I released four EPs in their native Australia in the early '90s, all of which are out of print. But they made enough of an impression to be picked up by Warner Brothers, and found a producer with a kindred love of dissonant power pop: Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth. Sound as Ever shows this power trio in top form, with enthusiastic backing to well-written songs. Tim Rodgers can scream like Kurt Cobain, but he also uses a deft vocal brush on softer songs like "Jaimme's Got a Gal" and the extraordinary "Ordinary." The mid-tempo (for You am I) songs like "Trainspotting" and "Rosedale" display You Am I's talents best. Hooks pull like undertow and no space is left unfilled. If the album was a little more consistent, this would be a classic. And if this world made more sense, every radio station would have been playing the single, "Berlin Chair," in 1993.