'Miraculous Dissolving Cures' (2001) - This musically rich collection of threnodies and noiresque tales finds Kaplan battling the forces of love and loss as well as the hypocrisy of both the secular and religious worlds. In 'Crushed Berries' the narrator laments that his 'friends will save a fly from a spiderweb but then they'll order rack of lamb or baby back ribs.' In 'Volunteers' the ghost of Job's wife rails against G-d for letting her children die 'because of some bet, some stupid bet.' 'Cutty Reel' is the dreamscape of a jilted degenerate; in an attempt to win back his beloved, he tries to buy a voodoo doll of her but finds that they're 'all sold out.' Stylistically, the record ranges from the quasi-Latin beat of 'Crushed Berries' to the hint of electronica in 'The Girl Who's Done It All' to the hypnotic mix of synthesizer and Spanish guitar throughout 'Unpaid Bills'. There's also a full-color 12-page c.d. booklet featuring abstract paintings juxtaposed to the words for each song. __ REVIEWS OF MIRACULOUS DISSOLVING CURES: 'On 'Miraculous Dissolving Cures,' transcontinental singer-songwriter Randy Kaplan sounds like he can hold the line against most folk-pop comers. He compiles a collection of stories that incorporates elements of longing and loss, and from the get-go of 'Crushed Berries'- with the line 'My friends will save a fly from a spider's web/But then they'll order rack of lamb or baby back ribs'- there's also a serving of irony. Kaplan, who's obviously well-read, conjures the Big Dipper, Sinatra and Job's wife on 'Volunteers,' a seeming non sequitur fest. But somehow, everything on the album fits together.' -Kevin Amorim / NEWSDAY, New York 'Kaplan's creativity sends out sparks. One can only hope that if he eventually cheers up, that won't dilute the intensity of his songwriting.' -DAILY HAMPSHIRE GAZETTE / Northampton, Massachusetts 'Randy Kaplan is a cheeky songwriter with enough personality to stand out from the dulling crowd of singer-songwriters.' -TIME OUT NEW YORK.