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Magik Markers – Surrender to the Fantasy (Giant Drag)

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Back with Magik Markers who’ll you be happy to know we‘ve now acquired and indeed played to near destruction a copy of their much chatted about new long playing platter Surrender to the Fantasy – incidentally out via drag city.

Broad hints as to what to expect on Surrender to the Fantasy where served in seismic letters by a limited 7 inch a few weeks ago which paired together ‘Ice Skater’ and ‘Machines’ both of which curiously fail to turn up here and both revealing the bands schizophrenic want with the former dinked in a sweetly frosted dream coat much awed by Velvet Underground while the latter arrived scalded courtesy of a short sharp blast of sonic no wave skree screeching terrorism.

And so to Surrender to the Fantasy – a deeply satisfying if not disorientating experience for what makes this set such an enjoyable if not fractured journey is the way it precariously teeters on a cliff edge that divides between pure pop and near shambling disaster (the near lazy eyed out of it squall freaked listless lilt of ‘WT‘ is a prime example as to the latter), if your looking for easy in your face sweet bubblegum pop look elsewhere, the Magik Markers make you work for your pleasure, that’s not to say that nuggets of crystalline groove are a rare find here for they are here in abundance albeit curved and shaped in a fragmented detailing. None more so is this the case than on the opening salvo ‘Crebs‘ a gloriously slice of dishevelled woozy psych pop spiked amid dream waves of bliss kissed vapour trailing feedback.

In sharp contrast appears ‘Acts of Desperation’ which aside being hailed by a harmonica alert – woo woo – is arrested and curdled with the same unhinged and scuffed zonked out woozy groove as that that graced the recent Bordellos full length, (is there a new musical genre these two are ploughing without having the forethought to tell anyone we wonder), all wiring earth beat motifs loosely welded upon a gorgeously mellowing albeit skew-whiff and frazzled blues coda.

Mentioned in previous despatches around here and indeed loved to bits is the frankly wired and weird ’Bonfire’ – a short, sharp and toxic slab of goofball earth beat ju-ju no less while the equally marvelled about ’mirror-less’ is tripped and weaved in a fuzzy felt tapestry whose stitching echoes to a Yerself is Steam era Mercury Rev softly psyched blissing out on Velvets sounds.

Best moments, there are many, the panoramic purr for instance of ‘Screams of Birds and Girls’ is assumed of a ghostly ethereal persona dream dipped in the serene bitter sweet haloing of cold waving shoe gazed mirages and cosmic pulsars. Somewhere else there’s the festering schizoid mutant groove of ‘American Sphinx face’ in essence your bonged mantra gorgeously hazed with a ‘Goo’ era Sonic Youth being refracted through the shit faced sonic view finder of Bardo Pond, the affection lavished upon it only just eclipsed by the sets most realised moment – the crestfallen ‘Empire Building’ a stunningly frail and elegant beauty cowed in sorrow and despairing reflection all shaded and showered in chamber psych symphonics and the cruel ache of some of the most exquisitely harrowing opining riff cries you’ll hear in such an age.

[Rating:4.5]

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.