ELVIS COSTELLO: SPIKE (Warner Bros.). God's Comic, Stalin Malone, Miss Macbeth: even the titles sting. The songs are like an acid bath; no quarter given or expected.
ROY ORBISON: MYSTERY GIRL (Virgin). This was going to be Orbison's first original solo album in ten years; it turned out to be his farewell. A little slick, but at least one tune, She's a Mystery to Me (produced by U2's Bono), is the perfect valedictory.
THE AMHERST SAXOPHONE QUARTET: BACH ON SAX (MCA Classics). Purists, beware! Your prejudice against unorthodox instrumentation could be shattered by this surprising set of Bach adaptations that...