Magik Markers – Balf Quarry

June 7, 2009

dc376The Magik Markers’ “Balf Quarry” is an album that, slowly but surely, has become one of my favorites this spring. Yeah, I liked it the first time, but I also have to say that my appreciation for it has grown progressively deeper as I’ve listened to it repeatedly over the past month or so since it’s come out on Drag City.

The Magik Markers’ last lp, “Boss” from 2007, was released on Ecstatic Peace records, so comparisons to Sonic Youth are inevitable. And along those lines I must admit that I do hear echoes of EVOL-era SY throughout “Balf Quarry.” More than that for me, though, X’s best work comes to mind when listening to this new album, though the similarities come not so much through the musical style but through the major themes: like X’s best work, most of the songs on “Balf Quarry” seem to be about America even when they are not specifically about America (though about half of them do deal specifically with America).

And on the most amazing track, titled “7/23” and posted on the band’s Myspace page, Elisa Ambrogio and Peter Nolan prove themselves true poets. Add that one to your reading list.

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