19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on 21 November 2003
Just thought I'd add a note, quite a few of the songs on Death to the Pixies are slighlty different to the original album versions such as gigantic, velouria...this is because the pixies were made to make 2 recordings of the songs, one for the album and 1 for the single release. The record label made them do it so people would buy their albums and their singles! Hope this info comes in handy when coming to choose if you want to buy this album or not! Its a great album.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 31 October 2003
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.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on 2 February 2002
Forget all the pompous retro-drivel you constantly read about The Pixies. Put to one side the fact that music journalists insist on giving them jingoisitic and meaningless labels such as "seminal", "influential", "groundbreaking" or whatever - in simple terms, this is a compilation of some of the finest rock songs you will ever come across.
You want loud - Planet of Sound
You want melodic - Digging for Fire
You want powerful - Debaser
You want soulful - Caribou
Every constituent part of what makes outstanding rock music is evident in abundance throughout the entirety of this album, with all those elements magnificently distilled in to one or two standout tracks that demand to be hailed as simply awesome - Tame, for instance, deserves to be considered one of the most significant tracks (I hesitate to call it a song given the grossly distorted quality of Charles's vocals...!) of the last twenty five years.
If you have to raise the funds to purchase this album by selling every other CD or piece of vinyl you have ever owned, do it - everything else just pales into insignificance by comparison.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 17 September 2001
I am not an old school Pixies fan. I first borrowed this CD off a friend last year having noticed that magazines such as NME continuously referred to the band as 'the most influencial..'. I was also going through a Nirvana phase and read that Teen Spirit was supposed to be a rip off of The Pixies. I don't normally like songs the first time I hear them but as soon as I played Debaser I left it on repeat for the next week. It was, and still is, the best and most perfect song i have ever heard. Tracks like Wave of Mutillation eased me into their harsh, yet orderly and in a different way catchy music. I soon realised that every song on this record, whilst all sounding completely different, is absolutely brilliant. I have personal favourites of Gouge Away, Holiday Song and Monkey Gone to Heaven - but yours will be different. If you have never heard of the Pixies and to do already possess Doolittle, Surfer Rosa or the other three equally brilliant albums, you are missing out. If you consider yourself a music fan buy this album. If you are a Pixies fan, try to catch Frank Black and the Catholics live. If you get to meet him, Kim, Joey or David beg them to reform.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 29 August 2001
An incredible compilation from the most influential and intelligent band of their generation. All these songs are masterpieces of beautiful lyrics sung with a feeling not matched before or since and soaring intense music to die for. Velouria is a particular favourite of mine although being a bit pop it is pop rock to perfection. This is a rare cd where every song deserves your full attention and never becomes old, no other cd i know can hold my concentration for its duration and make me think that it lasted just a second, having me beg for it to all start again.
Many of the pixies classic songs are not on this, but there isn't room for them all, the selection has been criticised by some but I don't envy the person who had to choose which songs to include and i think they did the best job possible. This is the perfect starting point to begin your exploration of the pixies full range of musical genius. Once listened to there is one thing for sure you will be glad you begged, stole or borrowed or even sold your soul to get this cd, you will never look at music in the same way. God bless the Pixies, the world will never tire of their twisted view on reality, it is after all closer to the truth than many bands have got.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 14 February 2004
As the great Bono once said "the pixies are the best band America has ever produced" i couldn't agree more. I first heard this album when i rented it from the library, it was the best 70p i've ever spent and it was the best £70 i ever spent on buying the rest of their albums. I'll say no more...
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 28 July 2006
Like Van Gough, many bands dont get the recognition they deserve, but hey presto! when they split or die they become cool and everyone begins to say they were influenced by them. The Pixies are such an act, during their 4 year existence from 1987 to 1991 (in which this compilation covers) they were mostly ignored but they did manage to create a new sound that would become grunge (Kurt Cobain was a big fan). This compilation is an excellent introduction to this inovative band; containing no filler, the songs compiled here are tight 4 minute wonders such as U-Mass and Bone Machine. Each song going down a completely different path to the last. If there is one fault, the pace does not change and there is often a lack of subtlety in the songwriting which results in in a collection of very different but one-dimensional songs but this is a minor niggle as the quality is so strong.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 9 March 2000
This album is a perfect entry point for those who have been unfortunate enough not to sample the gut twisting, awe inspiring, headbutt music of the band that has inspired so many others. Universally admired and acknowledged by too many indie guitar bands to mention, the Pixies have a Beatlesuqe quality of having no real style pattern or repeatable formula to their songs. This ranges from the singalong "Here Comes Your Man" to the absolutely throbbingingly manic "Tame". Pixies main man, Frank Black, wites lyrics than can shock, confuse and fascinate all at the same time. "Planet of Sound" is one of many songs from the early albums that expresses Frank's fascination with space and space opera. "Debaser" is a gem of distilled rock. If it doesn't move you, I suggest you rapidly check to see if you still have a pulse and heartbeat. If you are a big record buyer I am sure you have encountered the phenomena of hearing a track or two from an album and, based on this, buy it only to be disappointed with the quality of the other tracks on the album. There is not a single pixies track I have come across that does not stimulate me emotionally and musically. I have seen The beatles, Hendrix, the Stones and literally 100's (if not 1,000's) of bands live but the Pixies at Brixton Academy was the Mutts Nuts. Do yourself a favour - buy every Pixies sound byte you can lay your hands on. Because you are worth it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 6 October 2000
The Pixies always sounded smarter, tougher. They always seemed to do it just right, from gigs in reverse, and the acrostic lyric of Ana [six lines, the first letter of each spelling 'Surfer']. They even picked just the right time to split. There are only two minor gripes about this album:
1. Doesn't have all the best songs. Everyone will complain about one of their favorites that isn't here. This is not a result of bad selection, it's just that they won't all fit.
2. The skits from Surfer Rosa are missing. But then, you'll be buying that soon enough....
This is a good place to start, and the Pixies are worth discovering. Kurt loved them, R.E.M. were listening, and for better of for worse, grunge owes a lot to them. But no grunge act would ever play a song as -odd- as 'Monkey Gone To Heaven'
on 17 May 2010
My sincere gratitude to Francis, Deal, Santiago and Lovering. They have lived the rock and roll lifestyle. They have been through internal rivalries and fallings out, stories of excess, a break up and a long awaited reunion. Much more importantly they have made some of the best music of the last 25 years. Classify the music as "indie", "alternative" or whatever you like, it is brilliant. Thanks to them for 45 minutes or however long this "Best of" record lasts desk jockeys like me can pretend we are as cool and smart as The Pixies were.
It was Francis' band. He wrote all but two of the tracks alone. Those two are the opening track, a cover of TheSurftones "Cecelia Ann" and "Gigantic", co-written with Kim Deal. It was mostly tensions between him and Deal that led to the break-up of the band but it's probably safe to assume that, in a Lennon/McCartney way, these tensions inspired at least some of the great music that was produced.
Musically the band was perfect together. Francis wrote the music and his screaming vocals and edgy lyrics immediately catch the listeners attention. After a while though the quality of the songs and the talent of the band hits you right between the eyes. Deal's smooth as silk voice contrasts brilliantly with Francis on songs like "Debaser", "Gigantic" and "Bone Machine", to say nothing of her tremendous work on the bass. Santiago and Lovering do trojan work on lead guitar and drums.
Favourite songs are hard to pick from such a collection of fine songs but for the sake of it I'll say "Here Comes Your Man", "Dig for Fire", "Gigantic" and "Monkey Gone to Heaven". All this beauty created in only four years (87-91). How lucky we were!
So if you'll excuse me I'm going to put on this CD and sing along like the ultra cool teenager I never was.