Jane's Addiction fans reached for the Zeppelin, and Strokes fans uncovered the Velvet Underground. All's well in geekdom. But now El Paso, Texas outfit the Mars Volta returns with a second full-length, challenging indie rawkers to reference their ... King Crimson and Yes albums?!? Frances the Mute
is all about hitting prog-rock's suite spot, with its five songs six to thirty minutes in length and bearing knotty Latin flourishes, piano and string arrangements, horn howls, and strangulated riffs unfolding in a lavishly wrought hydra. For fans of convoluted, indulgent musical mitosis, Frances the Mute
will leave you saying, "Shine on, you crazy diamonds."