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Wave of Mutilation - The Best of the Pixies

4.6 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (3 May 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: 4AD
  • ASIN: B0001RVTXO
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 8,824 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Product Description

Wave of Mutilation: Best of Pixies is an effort at capturing some of the Pixie's greatest moments of their four studio albums. The album includes 23 of their best tracks including B-sides and rare covers including a cover of Neil Young's "Winterlong". This compilation follows the previous compilation, Death to the Pixies.

BBC Review

It's not a bad legacy to have had Kurt Cobain declare that without you there would have been no Nirvana. And now, to coincide with the band's first tour in over ten years, The Pixies release a Best Of album that beckons elfishly to be listened to by reminiscers of indie-rock's inspired heyday. And introduces the band to those taking their first taste of Boston's finest.

Wave of Mutilation is an almost chronological compilation of 23 tracks from the band's career spanning 5 albums and 6 years.

The early Come On Pilgrim days are represented by the tale of incestuous union and live favourite "Nimrod's Son", thrashing guitar classic "Holiday Song" and fresh as ever sounding "Caribou". These three tracks from their '87 debut include the twisted surfcore rock, the broody bass lines, screeching vocals and dark lyrical content that's so unique to The Pixies.

Then along came the Surfer Rosa album where, without realising it at the time, a pre-Nevermind Steve Albini produced the blueprint for grunge and a legend was born. In 1989 Doolittle took the band to the next stage with producer Gil Norton sharpening the melodies and mastering the band dynamics. This is arguably the album you should experience first if you're a newcomer to this seminal indie rock band.

This retrospective captures all the key moments of the band's brief but eventful career. Hearing the beautiful pop genius of "Here Comes Your Man" and the impassioned screaming punk racket that is "Debaser" alongside gems like "Gigantic" tickles the nostalgia hairs on the back of my neck and reminds me why The Pixies mean so much to so many.

There is little to attract the serious Pixie lover on Wave Of Mutilation due to the previous Death To The Pixies & Complete B-sides compilations. (Though the inclusion of the Neil Young cover "Winterlong" and live favourite "Into The White" will please their obsessive fans). However, it's still great to get another chance to reflect on the musical achievements of a band as pioneering as this. The world is a better place for having them. --Jacqueline Hodges

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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By A Customer on 15 Jun. 2004
Format: Audio CD
Having bought most of the Pixies on vinyl and tape many years ago, I really havn't listened to them for quite a while. Time had dimmed the memory of just how good these guys were, and it was not 'til I forked out for this "best of" that the rush of listening to their 3 minute wonders flooded back. From "Monkey goes to heaven" to "Here comes your man" it was a solid hour of pleasure. I could proselytize about their importance and how they've influenced so many bands, but that's best left to Mojo and other assorted pundits. For me its simply worth the money.
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By A Customer on 10 Jun. 2004
Format: Audio CD
The Pixies are dark. Their songs concern sliced eyeballs, incest and motorbike crashes. Don't let that put you off though - they're one of the most consistent, genius rock bands you will ever hear.
The first Pixies song I ever heard was 'Gigantic', and my reaction was to laugh out loud at how *good* it is. The seductive whispers of the verse turn into a fully sexual chorus, which squeezes a fourth syllable out of the word. Listen for the slightly unhinged guitar solo too, it's a Pixies trademark.
By a trademark, I mean this - The Pixies can take a poppy, rifftastic song and subvert it by dark, thunderous bass lines and biting, lurid subject matter. Or they can twist feedback into a glorious fuzz-soaked pop-rock song. None of their songs are completely straight, there's always some humour in there you won't get until the third, fourth, fifth listen. The Pixies keep you coming back for more.
Most of this best of is taken from their masterpiece, Doolittle. 'Debaser' is a punk-pop anthem, so good it can make a thousand people sing about slicing eyeballs. 'Monkey Gone To Heaven' has another fantastic chorus, but vists themes of ecological destruction and despair at humanity's waste. 'Here Comes Your Man' is the best song The Beatles never wrote. And listen to 'Tame'. Those soft verse-loud chorus dynamics sound familiar?
Nirvana. Why Nirvana suceeded where the Pixies did not is a puzzle to me, because the Pixies are more than their equal. In fact, they were such an inspiration to Kurt Cobain he was afraid people would view Nevermind as one long Pixies rip-off. And hey, you can see his point. But personally, I like (and definately enjoy) The Pixies much more. They have a real sense of humour and (something Nirvana's songs never had) sexuality.
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By A Customer on 2 May 2004
Format: Audio CD
"The Pixies are reforming...... lets release ANOTHER best of, stick some b-sides on off of that b-sides thing we released a year back, add a fan incentive (Winterlong), and make some money!"
I'd like to say i was bitter, if only the Pixies weren't so darned GOOD! this best of'll be a great intro to the band, and even though the standards might vary a little towards the end, the first half should remind everyone what a huge influnce this lot have had on each and every band that release records today.
Still....... Doolittle might just be the better first purchase, an awesome band at their peak. Lets just hope that the reunion gets them writing again.
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Format: Audio CD
This greatest hits album, brought out to celebrate the reformation of thePixies, is certainly a great deal better than the previous one, entitled'Death To The Pixies'. Now Death To The Pixies was a good enough greatesthits album, but it really focused a little too much on the Dootlittlealbum, rather than giving equal attention to each album.
This greatest hits package is a great deal better. It contains tracks fromall 5 of the Pixies albums which each have their share of great tracks.This CD also contains a number of B-sides and cover versions. However,these could already be found on the 'Complete B-Sides' album. It isslightly disappointing that there are still no new tracks buried out to beput on here (not to mention the fact that the awesome 'I Bleed' and 'RockMusic' are still not on here!!!) but that doesn't change the fact thatthis is still a killer collection of songs!
Newcomers to the Pixies would be wise to buy this album, as it containsmost of their best songs and is a great introduction to their great music.However, anyone who already owns all 5 albums and the B-sides collectionreally doesn't have much to gain from this.
Despite some disappointments, I have given this album a 5 star rating asit is still a collection of some of the best songs ever written!
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Format: Audio CD
The Pixies were the most consistently brilliant group in the history of popular music. If you put together everything this band ever recorded (four albums, one EP, a few unreleased tracks and a load of B-sides), you come up with about two mediocre songs (they never did anything I'd describe as 'bad').
So this compilation, released to coincide with their reunion tour, faces the same problem as 1997's 'Death to the Pixies': how do you distil the Pixies' back catalogue onto one disc? I've tried many times myself and it isn't easy.
Let's start with the gripes. Like its predecessor, this effort shamefully neglects the band's final two albums, Bossanova and Trompe le Monde. There are bound to be notable omissions, but 'Is she weird', 'Down to the well', 'The happening', 'Hangwire', 'Letter to Memphis' and Motorway to Roswell' would be among the first songs I'd jot down for inclusion.
In addition, I've always preferred the Surfer Rosa version of 'Gigantic', and favouring 'Broken Face' (as great as it is) over 'River Euphrates' seems very eccentric to me. 'Vamos' and 'Into the white' always sounded far better live than on record, and the UK surf version of 'Wave of mutilation' is, in my opinion, more interesting than the original.
This is clearly intended as a user-friendly guide to the Pixies rather than a complete portrait, hence the inclusion of seven songs from the more poppy Doolittle. These are all great. In fact, every note on this album is perfect. Purely on its own terms, it's completely faultless.
But I can't recommend it as an introduction. If you've never heard the Pixies before, all their albums are easily available at mid-price. Buy them instead - I promise you won't regret it.
All I'm saying, pretty baby, la la love you...
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