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Complete 'B' Sides
They've been called the last of the great punk rock bands, and although that's an accolade which smacks of revisionism, it does give some hint of The Pixies' colossal impact. In fact, you can still feel some of those aftershocks resonating through Nirvana, Bowie, JJ72, Fight Club and selected vodka ads.
Peter Murphy, 15 Feb 2001
Without getting too Arts Channel about it, the Pixies were all about cutting shit up: form, content, lyrics, guitar sounds, rhythm, bodies, the whole Brion Gysin. Deconstructionists to the last, they had little glamour to speak of (although all the indie boys, including Kurt Cobain, had a crush on Kim Deal). What they did have was a murderous noise.
My point is, even a B-sides collection from a band this mighty (and even their worst album Trompe Le Monde was a motherfucker) is a big deal.
All the food groups are amply represented here, in live versions of 'River Euphrates' and 'Vamos', cretin hops like 'Manta Ray' and 'Weird At My School', used jet trash like 'Bailey's Walk'. We're also afforded the chance to hear a great band dicking around, covering The Yardbirds and Neil Young ('I've Been Waiting For You' and a soaring 'Winterlong', which first appeared on The Bridge tribute album), cranking out mental instrumentals and alternative arrangements such as the hazy slow surf take on 'Wave Of Mutilation'. And at last, the David Lynch connection is made explicit in the band's live version of the Eraserhead tune 'In Heaven (Lady In The Radiator Song)'.
The Pixies were originals not because they stole from the best (The Surftones, Pere Ubu, Birthday Party, The Beach Boys, The Ramones, The Velvets, Burroughs and Bunuel) but because they then scrambled these elements so bad you could rarely trace them. This characteristic was apparent even in their looser moments, and consequently, Complete 'B' Sides should be considered an integral part of The Pixies' canon.