Producing a relevant track list for any band's 'Best of...' album is troublesome, but for a band as eclectic, turbulent and melodic as the Pixies, it becomes an almost impossible task. Throughout their career, the Pixies have had a powerful influence on popular music, with many bands adopting their bitter-sweet Spanish-tinged pop-rock (David Bowie famously claimed Nirvana's 'Nevermind' was a complete rip-off of the Pixies style). So how do you begin compiling a seminal collection?
The 17 tracks that make up 'Death to the Pixies' span their career from 1987 to 1991, and their 5 studio albums are all represented. It would be easy for me to list tracks that I felt should have been included, but as a single CD it holds together quite well.
A cover of the Surftones' 'Cecilia Ann' kicks the album off, and throughout the next 16 tracks we are treated to such classics as the surf-inspired 'Here Comes Your Man', the manic 'Debaser', Kim Deal's trance-like bass playing on 'Gigantic', and the haunting 'Where is my Mind?'
There is no ultra-rare, never-before-heard track to entice those who've already bought all the released albums, although some may wish to purchase it for the marginally enhanced audio.
I would recommend 'Doolittle' or 'Surfa Rosa/Come on Pilgrim' as anybody's first Pixies album, however 'Death to the Pixies' serves as a well-structured look at the career of one of the most revered bands of the past 20 years.