Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Quick review - Pixies at the Paramount, Seattle - 12-Nov-2009

(From the Rock A My Soul department)

Hi everyone,

I've been extremely busy lately, so I haven't had a chance to see too many bands live. However - I did manage to catch one of the Pixies "Doolittle" shows.

Basically - it's the 20th anniversary of the album Doolittle. (Has it been that long? Sheesh!) So - they're doing a small tour playing the entire album - in order. The only other songs in the show are the b-sides from Doolittle. (More on that in a sec.)

So - yeah - it did rock. There's a couple of songs on there that, back in the day, they rarely played - plus one - Silver - that they never played at all.

They started out with a few b-sides to warm up. Namely: Dancing The Manta Ray, Weird At My School, Bailey's Walk & Manta Ray.

Then - Doolittle. Complete.

Odd pacing for a rock show, really. One normally expects a few hits, then an unknown song or two, then more hits. But - all of these songs are already known! So, you get the album pacing. Which isn't necessarily the best in a concert hall - but this worked for me.

(In case you've forgotten: Debaser, Tame, Wave Of Mutilation, I Bleed, Here Comes Your Man, Dead, Monkey Gone To Heaven, Mr. Grieves, Crackity Jones, La La Love You, No. 13 Baby, There Goes My Gun, Hey, Silver and Gouge Away)

A note here about the visuals. They started out with the short film "Un chien andalou" - this is the inspiration for Debaser, so it makes sense here. Then, they kept the lighting and visuals appropriate, but more complex than I usually associate with the Pixies. Artful video projections and good lighting for a change. That was welcome for me - it's about time they had some support on tour this way. One of the highlights was a video projection of them - while they were on stage looking at themselves. Very cool.

First encore was the remaining b-sides: Wave Of Mutilation (UK Surf) and Into The White. Into The White was an extended "freak out" version with tons of white smoke. (Get it? ^_^)

Then, we got a second encore. Since they were out of b-sides, this meant we got a few classics: Caribou, Vamos and Gigantic. Vamos was particularly extended with a Joey Santiago guitar solo. Since it was Joey, it wasn't a "classic guitar rawk moment". Instead, there was a lot of creative guitar playing - like using the guitar pickup switch as a percussion sound, and a short segment with a tossed drumstick.

The second encore was performed with the house lights up - this meant there was no expectations that the band would stick around after that. A good way to end.

Quick notes: Kim gave a running commentary throughout the show - announcing side changes of the vinyl, etc. I thought it was cute, anyway. ^_^ David & Joey were lively. Frank was in impressive voice throughout - he still screams like nobody's business. However - he didn't say a word to the audience the entire evening.

I did purchase the show - haven't had a chance to download it yet. Looking forward to checking it out now that I'm home, and away from the theater.