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And so the Pixies arrive at the 'difficult' fourth album stage. 'Difficult' because they haven't set so much as a little toe wrong to date, which naturally causes one to wonder just how much further they can travel in their pixilated state before tumbling head over arse?
Damian Corless, 26 Aug 1990
And so the Pixies arrive at the 'difficult' fourth album stage. 'Difficult' because they haven't set so much as a little toe wrong to date, which naturally causes one to wonder just how much further they can travel in their pixilated state before tumbling head over arse? Bossanova demonstrates that the Pixies continue to enjoy the Devil's protection and they're still using it to walk on water.
'Come On Pilgrim' was the newborn monster flexing its muscles and making its first clumsily effective strikes. 'Surfer Rosa' was a full-grown murderous brute running amok in an indiscriminate frenzy. A schizophrenic cunning emerged on Doolittle as the listener was subjected to a barrage of aural ambushes from instrumentation and arrangements that popped up mischievously from myriad hidden fox-holes in the mix. An extraordinary album melding pulverising power with an unfettered spirit of adventure. Doolittle hits creative heights which most acts never come within hailing distance of. The problem is, how do you follow-up your own 'Sergeant Pepper'?
The Pixies' response is to gather the reins a mite tighter, utilising the experience they've accumulated to bring their collective psychosis under closer control. All the time, however, the demons that drive them keep tugging away, awaiting any opportunity to scratch their way to the surface - something they succeed in doing on 'Rock Music', a terrifying, skewered parody of hard rock. The Pixies can poke such fun because although they're capable of raising a din to drown out a thousand megadeaths combined, they are fundamentally a pop group. Specifically they make Mad Pop, and nobody does it better.
For proof check out Kim Deal's ethereal girlie blanket voice; the bastardised football chant of 'Is She Weird'; the addictive, ascending chorus of 'Hang Wire', or the Ramones-with-lead-boots classicism of 'All Over The World' with its guitar motif that half remembers Sweet's 'Love Is Like Oxygen'.
The Pixies take you on a trip to 'wade in the shine of the ever', offering a vicarious escape to a parallel universe escape to a parallel universe where none of the 'normal' values necessarily hold true. In the process they offer the key to a world alive with possibilities. The Pixies are the greatest band in their world - the only band in their world. Enjoy!