With A Blue Girl marking the Chicago industrial/alt. rock collective’s third outing, The Joy Thieves continue to ascend in the annals of the underground music scene. Already hosting an impressive roster of contributing musicians, the band’s sound keeps mutating into a strange brew of styles that is no shortage of noisy energy and total rock & roll fury; one need look no further than the vicious assault of scathing riffs and roaring vocals that is the opening “Destroy” for proof, the lyrics a statement of defiance and perseverance, ending with the anthemic chant of “We won’t give in to hate.” Tracks like “The Capsule Answer” and “Dysfunction Masturbation” seem to take the lyrical piss out of modern society’s efforts to ignore an inadequate reality as both come across as poignant punk rock manifestos decrying conformity and addiction, while Chris Connelly’s signature vocal acrobatics accentuate the sociopolitical poetry of such lines as “Contempt for all the wisdom of restraint” and “Run the races on the needles of democracy” on “The Badlander,” the song’s discordant guitars and strident rhythms the virtual stuff of industrial/rock legend. Matthew Clark slithers and shrieks through the title track, the shimmering guitar leads and grating rhythms playing a perfect cyanide soundtrack to a tale of heartache, while Mike Reidy’s acerbic delivery on “Dead Weight” atop frigid yet melodic synths and screaming riffs and solos stands as one of this writer’s favorites in all The Joy Thieves’ oeuvre. Ending the proceedings is Julian Beeston’s remix of the band’s cover of Siouxsie & The Banshees’ “Cities in Dust,” the clash of Ania Tarnowska’s vocal bellows amid shrill electronics, sustained howls of bagpipes, and twangs of banjos truly making for a dynamic if eccentric closer. Ultimately, A Blue Girl achieves what the previous EP did not in presenting more original material and proving The Joy Thieves’ musical mettle, blasting out a sound as varied as the musicians creating it.