I just picked up a copy of The Pixies at The BBC and I’ve really liked it. Most of the reviews talk about whether or not it’s essential for the Pixies fan, but I find myself thinking that it’s a very good introduction to their music.
The Pixies rank high on any list of bands that I like and admire very much, and don’t listen to that often. I think they made great music, but it’s demanding. It’s complex, loud, and slightly abrasive. I really truly think that Doolittle is one of the best produced and best sounding albums that I own but, while it isn’t exactly complicated, it doesn’t simplify easily. You either have to be ready to appreciate everything that’s going on, or it feels like a minimal concept with a bunch of extraneous stuff going on.
You can’t just sit back and find the core of a song, and groove to that because the whole arrangement is what makes the songs what the are.
But, the BBC version do a very good job of finding a core to the song and making everything else friendlier. It isn’t as theatrical and it has less frantic energy than the versions that I’ve heard before. While I think of energy and sense of theater as virtues of the Pixies, it’s kind of nice to have a version that isn’t all dressed up.