Buried within the album notes to Compared to What is a slice of revealing information about Mushroom leader Patrick O'Hearn's musical orientation. "Credit must be given," he states, to Wolfgang Dauner and Big Fun. The former is an experimental German composer with a similar disregard for music's dividing lines, the latter, one of Miles Davis' seminal fusion albums from 1974. Though the members of the Mushroom collective have been continually pegged as space rockers, the band's sound is in fact an amalgam of sonic substances that also defies easy classification. These eight songs reside at the blurred edges of psychedelic rock, muscular funk, electric jazz, musique concrete, and void-like ambiance. Conceived as a pre-release taster of the band's Foxy Music album, O'Hearn handed tapes of fresh material over to Fuck guitarist Kyle Statham, Directions in Music/Pullman member Bundy K. Brown, and Faust's Hans Joachim Irmler, among others. The resulting remixes are designed for those who don't need their music delivered in easily digestible portions. Yet, even though the compositions have a tendency to veer into the muddle, there are also some surprisingly lucid moments. The title track is the gem of the set: an inspired take on the 1969 Les McCann/Eddie Harris hit. The song features a fiery vocal from guest Gary Floyd (Sister Double Happiness, Black Kali Ma) and squelching cornet from Beck sideman Jon Birdsong. Brown's 20-minute version of "Americans Own the Moon," on the other hand, will surely divide listener's through its sheer, side-spanning size. Not an official album release (though it clocks in at nearly 70 minutes), this is hardly gap-filler either. Though it may win the group few converts, Compared to What is of definite interest to fans.