**** Richard Burton
*** Eddie Fisher
** John Warner
* Larry Fortensky

The Golden Dove


How long have we been waiting for this Charming Melodee? 50,000 fortnights, and the bumble of a bee? It's been two years since medieval pop/prog goddess Mary Timony's last record, and the tears you spilt over her absence were worth every moment. Helium's officially over (Ash moved to SF), so Mary took the bull by the balls and infused loads of catchy rock into her unique, baroque-style, curlicue guitar work. Drum machines, viola, cello, and piano fill out the fantasy, with drumming by Christina Files and Karate's Jeff Goddard on bass. The most surprising element is her lyricism; she's still conjuring dragon imagery, but her lyrics are more straightforward than they've been since the '90s. (i.e., "The only boy I ever loved/turned into a golden dove/and moved to California.") Stoked by rock, power, and prettiness, The Golden Dove will enchant you from your cave. (Also: new Spells record coming soon, with Mary, Carrie Brownstein, and beloved ex-Need drummer, Rachel Carns-- WOO!) JULIANNE SHEPHERD


The '92 VS '02


Prefuse 73's latest offering, an EP called The '92 VS '02, is basically a continuation of his brilliantVocal Studies & Uprock Narratives (2001). Prefuse 73, the street name for Atlanta-based producer Scott Herren, is close to Wu-Tang Clan's RZA's aesthetic sensibility, as he has a taste for rare, strange noises. But he doesn't break his beats the way RZA or Jay Dee (Slum Village) does. He prefers instead to let things slip, slide, and suck in and out. Noises are layered with strings, phantom harmonies, and forgotten radio tunes. Herren essentially works on the memory, but he does not neglect body. His beats have a bounce that will make your head nod to what is certainly the most beautiful hiphop in the world. CHARLES MUDEDE


More Specific Less Pacific

(54'40' or Fight!)

Capturing the essence of a brooding, distorted guitar is easy to do, but unlike many bands with a similar aesthetic, Caesura rocks the darkness without drowning the listener in the sludge of unrelenting minor chords. Instead, this Bay Area trio tweaks the time signatures, adds agitated vocals with a blood-curdling intensity, and overdrives the whole thing into a churning vice grip of dramatic, post-punky pleasure. It's not the first time this equation has been put to disc, so Caesura excel when they toss in the quirks--for instance, the impressive track three is 30 seconds of carefully written yet flashy interplay between guitar and high-hat. Other aspects, like, passionate vocals, subtle interludes, and a soul-grappling rhythm section, mark Caesura as a band of smarty-pantses with some commanding cadences to let loose. What really takes them over the top is their friction and energy--two solid elements that burn hotly through this record. JS