Last Night: The Pixies Drop Twenty Years of Doolittle, And Some Change at The Paramount

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Laura Musselman
Frank Black, with the Pixies, on Thursday, November 12 at The Paramount.
Though this tour is a celebration of the 20th anniversary of Doolittle, I was hoping a few more obscure cuts would make an appearance, and while I was not holding my breath, the Pixies actually did not disappoint. Before jumping into Doolittle (they even played the songs in order), the band played a few cuts from Complete B-sides: "Dance the Manta Ray," "Weird At My School" and "Bailey's Walk." The crowd didn't appear to be familiar with those tracks, but I'm sure that the diehard fans smattered throughout the room who knew the songs creamed their pants with glee. Especially because the last (admittedly only other) time I saw the Pixies at a "regular," non-anniversary show, they played mostly Doolittle songs, since that's their most popular album. Funny thing is, even though this tour was slated to be a Doolittle-centric tour, I think the band actually played more B-sides this time around. I was holding out hope that they'd play "Subbacultcha," which is probably my favorite Pixies track of all time. It didn't happen. "Where is My Mind?" didn't make an appearance, either, which was honestly fine by me.

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Laura Musselman
Kim Deal's got a great smile

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Laura Musselman
Frank Black, not smiling
As you can see, the band was all smiles -- well, for Frank Black, cracking a grin on occasion is as close as it gets -- but the Pixies have not, as far as I know, ever made things about showmanship. They mainly just stood up there and played their instruments, and the main visual attraction happened on a screen behind the band: think, like, creepy paper-mache babies crying, clips from Reefer Madness and the Pixies' heads bopping along to "Wave of Mutilation" as the actual band played the song below their giant pixellated likenesses. Above it all, a giant, inflatable light structure hung suspended; its shape resembled peas stuck together with toothpicks. I'm still not quite sure what it was supposed to represent. The coolest display of musicianship happened toward the end of the show, when Joey Santiago played his guitar with a drum stick, something I didn't see him do last time I saw the Pixies. And the crowd ate it up. Here's proof:

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Laura Musselman
Enraptured Pixies fans

And now, a track list:

Dance the Manta Ray

Weird at my School

Bailey's Walk

Manta Ray

Debaser

Tame

Wave of Mutilation

I Bleed

Man

Dead

Monkey Gone To Heaven

Mr. Grieves

Crackity Jones

La La Love You

#13 Baby

There Goes My Gun

Hey

Silver

Gouge Away

First encore:

Slow version of "Wave of Mutilation" (always the version I've preferred)

White

Second encore:

Caribou

Vamos

GIgantic

 
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