Customer Review

4 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Essential listening, but (whisper it) it hasn't aged so well, 25 Feb 2009
This review is from: Surfer Rosa & Come On Pilgrim (Audio CD)
For me, time has not been kind to Pixies - as an artsy teenager in the late 80s, I loved their first three releases up to Doolittle and saw them play brilliantly live at Reading.

I was first introduced to Surfer Rosa at a time when 99% of my schoolfriends were content listening to the prevailing chart tosh - Kylie and Jason, Sonia, Bros. Late one night at a party, one of my cooler sixth-form friends put the album on the tape player; it was loud, screechy, hi-energy, low-fi and just about the most exciting thing I'd ever heard (I had yet to discover the Jesus And Mary Chain).

It had an attitude that defiantly thumbed its nose, nay flipped the finger, at the well-polished but vacuous chart fodder of the time and appealed to the teenage rebel in me; I loved it and was hooked.

So, after a gap of about 15 years since my last listen, I finally re-purchased this twin-album CD and realised something had changed in the intervening years; it just didn't sound that great any more. Why not ?

Well, mainly, grunge happened. It crossed over into the mainstream and created a new audience ready for all sorts of bands that would otherwise have been consigned to the underground. Bands who owe their sound and success to musical pioneers like Pixies, Sonic Youth et al but who are more adept and sophisticated song-writers.

Surfer Rosa, then, is essential listening for anyone who wants to understand where so-called "alternative" music came from and why it matters. Moreover, as Pixies first full-length release (here handily packaged with their original EP) it is an album of great historical significance and certainly merits a place in any serious record collection. But it does sound a bit dated now.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 21 Mar 2009 11:56:24 GMT
Last edited by the author on 21 Mar 2009 12:09:32 GMT
R. Dunford says:
Obviously I have to respect your opinion and all that, but I completely disagree about it not ageing well. I only started listening to it recently and It has more depth than most other stuff that's out there, there is so much energy. I'd be interested to know who the more adept and sophisticated songwriters are, as I wouldn't mind listening to them (if I haven't already).

If this album was re-released into the current shi*ty alternative music scene, the NMEers would'nt know what had hit them. If only...

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Jul 2009 16:13:09 BDT
T. Lewis says:
Thanks for your comments; for sure, tastes differ but you might like to try The Colour and The Shape by Foo Fighters ("My Hero" is very Pixies), Psychocandy by The Jesus and Mary Chain, Daydream Nation by Sonic Youth, Isn't Anything by My Bloody Valentine and Welcome to Sky Valley by Kyuss. You can "try before you buy" with Spotify - hope you enjoy them. Cheers, Tom

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Jul 2009 09:55:55 BDT
T. Lewis says:
Hello again - I thought of a few more classic "guitar rock" albums from this era that IMHO are more accomplished, have stood the test of time better and which you may enjoy (if you have not already got them !): Master of Puppets, Angel Dust, Appetite for Destruction, Achtung Baby, Superunknown.

Enjoy - cheers, Tom

Posted on 22 Nov 2013 18:39:54 GMT
Ms McT says:
I was 16 when I first heard Surfer Rosa / Come on Pilgrim, and I listened to it every single day for about... the next two years? That has never happened since. So it's no wonder that a rather long hiatus followed, with so much music happening in the meantime. Today, aged 40, something made me dig it out of my unmanageably large music collection. And it sounds just as raw, as fresh as ever. Along with Sonic Youth's "Goo", Surfer Rosa is one of my lifelong favourites. Doolittle is fine, it has some great pop songs - but that's the problem for me. Too poppy. If you're a Stones person and not a Beatles person, a Bleach person and not a Nevermind person, you'll probably prefer Surfer Rosa.

Posted on 3 Jun 2014 13:30:30 BDT
My daughter just downloaded 'Gigantic' after hearing it on a TV ad yesterday! I don't think REALLY good music ages in the traditional sense. They got 1 more new fan now!
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T. Lewis
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Location: UK

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