Magik Markers Balf Quarry

Magik Markers are among the fire-eating outsiders who oddly turned down the heat for their appearances on Thurston Moore's Ecstatic Peace records. Connecticut duo Elisa Ambrogio and Pete Nolan's 2007 Boss surprised folks more used to their "Etta James on PCP in a junkyard" approach to bluesy noise. Balf Quarry takes a bit of turn, but not towards the past. Instead they explore new sounds, like circuit-bent Casio beats ("7/23") and Kurt Weill-inspired piano balladry, set atop nauseous electronic bass waves ("State Number"). Opener "Risperdal" may be a tip of the greasy hat to Drag City antecedents Royal Trux and their style of grimy, groping blues. The flame isn't extinguished entirely, as adrenalin rush freak-outs "Jerks" and "The Lighter Side of… Hippies" reassures. Neither has Ambrogio lost her rambling way with lyrics, nor her scary/sexy delivery. Those looking for the feedback infernos of Magik Markers live should realize this might be a better at-home option until they secure renters insurance for their apartments. (Drag City)