PIXIES - Bossanova LP
On its blurb for its entry on the best 100 albums of that decade, Rolling Stone offered that “Bossanova was the Pixies’ most straight-ahead rock album” … nonsense. You have a spaghetti Western theme set in space in “Cecilia Ann” (that open the album, no less) and reminders that Pixies belong to the 4AD label by doing dream pop better than 90% of the bands on the 4AD label in “Ana” and “Havalina” (that closes the album, no less). The skitter-y guitar that drives the verses of “Dig For Fire” is the closest they’ve ever come to funk. “All Over the World” is one of their most ambitious compositions: listen to the first minute and then skip to the last minute and wonder how you got there (this is something you can’t do for any of the songs off Surfer Rosa and Doolittle); the radio transmissions over the guitar lines at the 3:00 mark-onwards are particularly effective, like a ship stranded in the middle of nowhere asking for help but too distant to ever get any. If these songs feel like they're throwaways because the hooks are dumber than they were on preceding albums (ie. "Allison," "Hang Wire," "Stormy Weather"), ignore Frank Black and listen to Joey Santiago. And the people who want more Doolittle do get it: two full minutes of unhindered and unhinged Frank Black to make up for the lack thereof on the opener in “Rock Music” (and like his vocals on "Debaser" or "Tame," catchy as ever) to the pop/rock of “Velouria” and “Is She Weird,” this time fed through controlled crescendos leading up to “MY VELOURIA” or “And her head has no room!” over nothing else but David Lovering’s pounding drums.