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Pixies


anewman
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(Okay, maybe this should be in ATF, but I'm also hoping to hear stuff about the band, and why they're good.)

I have recently discovered the Pixies. A few weeks ago DiscoStu started a top 100 songs thread, and his number 1 was Debaser by the Pixies - which I dutifully downloaded. It is fucking great. I downloaded a couple more (bam thwok, and they only one I'd ever heard before, Here Comes Your Man), and they were great too. So then I cracked and I'm currently iPodding Waves of Mutiliation, which I got from iTunes, and I think is a Best of... album. It's also great. They sound a bit like Mudhoney, for any grunge fans, except there seem to be many more good songs. I also like the mix of male and female singers. And they have this constantly surprising and thrilling sense of melody, which is very satisfying after a few listens - I love the little interlude in bam thwok.

So I'm hoping any Pixies fans can recommend me a couple of good albums, because I'd like to get a hold of the CDs rather than just downloading stuff. But I'm also interested in anything about the band, as I know pretty much nothing about them. Are they American? Where from? How long have they been around?

And is it Pixies, or the Pixies?

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To answer the rest of your post (which I missed first time - it's getting late): They're American, formed about 1986, pioneered alternative rock music, released four critically acclaimed albums, split, and have recently reformed (the track you mentioned, Bam Thowk, is one of their new ones). And it's just "Pixies".

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At first, they just sound average, even annoying perhaps. But then something nice is always happening, in every song...

That is exactly it. For me when that happens it's a sure sign of really good music. You know how it takes a few listens to start to find the intricacies of the track satisfying. And then you sort of find your way back to the main melody line and it really starts to click. That's happening for me with a few of these Pixies songs.

Maybe the comparison won't work for everyone, but it's the same thing with classical music. Take a bit of Shostakovic, for example. It can sound unnecessarily complex and atonal at first, but as you become familiar with the music, you get to know the pattern of it and it starts to reveal its complexities.

I'm quite excited about it actually. I'll definitely be picking up a few of these albums, if they're so cheap.

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May I add that you also can try the first two Frank Black solo albums?

Self titled and "Teenage of the year". Not as good as Pixies albums, but good.

And an album that begins with a song named "Whatever Happened To Pong?" can't be bad.

My brother and me used to play it

Down at the bar

Taking money from guys

More used to the playing of cards

Paddle the paddle to the side to the side

To the side to the side to the paddle the paddle

Paddle the paddle the side to the side

Pong

Ball in the machine

Now virtually everyone's singing

A popular song

But I still believe

In the excellent joy of the Pong

Now if they take it H. G. Wells

Well, I'll be on the first flight

To a time before the Kong

Whatever happened to Pong?

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I AM HALONIC, GREATEST LIVING PIXIES FAN, ALL MAY TREMBLE IN MY PRESENCE, I WHO WAITED LONG MILLENIA TO BEAR WITNESS TO THEIR MAJESTY IN THE ACADEMY OF BRIXTON.

yeah I think they're really great. and all they're stuff is dirt cheap everywhere now.

yay!

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"Surfa Rosa" and "Dolittle" are by far their best albums, "Bosanova" is a bit patchy to be honest while "Trompe le Monde" is a pretty poor final album from them.

If you plan to get any of the band members non-pixies stuff I'd highly recommeded getting a copy of The Breeders "Pod", which is ace. It was the first and best Breeders album, their later stuff could also be described as patchy. Most of Frank Blacks solo stuff isn't really worth bothering with to be honest.

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If you plan to get any of the band members non-pixies stuff I'd highly recommeded getting a copy of The Breeders "Pod", which is ace. It was the first and best Breeders album.

I agree with the pod reccomendation though, for me, Kim Deal's finest album is the The Amps one "Pacer".

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I AM HALONIC, GREATEST LIVING PIXIES FAN, ALL MAY TREMBLE IN MY PRESENCE, I WHO WAITED LONG MILLENIA TO BEAR WITNESS TO THEIR MAJESTY IN THE ACADEMY OF BRIXTON.

yeah I think they're really great. and all they're stuff is dirt cheap everywhere now.

yay!

Hey, I waited many millenia to get to see them at their first gig in Brixton too. ;)

Anyway, my fav album is probably Doolittle, with Surfer pushing it close. And Trompe, despite being universally acknowledged as their worst, is a fucking trillion times better than any album released in the past few years.

Best band EVAR.

Also: their excellent DVD is, well, excellent, as it has the Gouge documentary, as well as bits from gigs and their music vids. An essential purchase. And get their B sides stuff too, and the BBC sessions, and if you're feeling particularly hardcore, they released the purple tape on CD a couple of years back.

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  • 15 years later...

Nice.  I might have been there that night -David Lovering did a magic act as the warm-up.  I saw them later (2011 by the look of it) when they played Doolittle from start to finish, also at Brixton Academy - one of the best gigs I've been to.

 

I can't say I'm that taken with their new single.  It's not *bad*, but I just find it a bit bland.  They're a band I absolutely love, but I'm not interested in any of their original music post-Trompe le Monde (which is great, IMO).

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