The Pixies caused about as much kerfuffle with their recent comeback four-track EP-1 as they did when Black Francis confessed to the band having reconvened back in 2010 for financial gain alone. Commensurately negative, the extended-play was widely lambasted: ‘The once-mighty Pixies debase their legacy with this mercifully brief new EP’ read Pitchfork’s Meta Description of a polarising 1.0 review, while their myriad competitors struggled similarly to see past the fact that, given that the Pixies of EP-1 are in nigh on every way incomparable to the Pixies of, say, Surfer Rosa or Doolittle, they were unlikely set to replicate their devastating form of yore.
Therefore going against the grain somewhat, I actually thought it measured up alright, not least when the rather more latterly likes of Bossanova and Trompe Le Monde should serve as the applicable yardstick. From the drivetime haze of Indie Cindy to the overwhelmingly pompous, palm muted stadium rock of Another Toe, subjectively it certainly felt as though the newly reconfigured four-piece were swimming, as opposed to sinking. And so too its opener, the languid Andro Queen which came replete with lyrics of mislaid rings and lucid guitars likely fished out from the rippling Caribbean waters cited all those years ago on Where Is My Mind?, passed the proverbial litmus test with aplomb. Yes, it’s only too easy to sing lines from Let It Be along to its verse, while Francis’ once-loony lyricisms can now sound a little anodyne by comparison. But eschew every superficial parallel, and it’s a pretty robust, if not entirely rousing song in essence.
Though its newly issued video, seen below, might just inspire that little bit more vim still. For featuring a sequence of shots that ostensibly seem to have been inspired by festival visitations past – sunless stumbles through heavy thickets; luminous lanterns ascending skyward; feral fancy dress; onerous journeys, and so on – it intimates toward a greater activity across the distant, if thankfully predestined summer months to come. Will the Pixies return to British shores to play the Eavis’ newly sold out Worthy Farm shindig next June? Perhaps, but on the evidence of their recent London dates, we ought unite in hope…
Pixies play two sold out dates at the Eventim Apollo next month.